Skip to main content

tv   Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  June 27, 2012 8:00pm-1:00am EDT

8:00 pm
call to see if -- [laughter] no. we don't have that. we obviously have meetings about policy and communications all i think like you, we are waiting for an opinion. we are waiting for a decision. i am not sure how useful it is to spend at least our time doing that. questions about the implementation of the affordable care act and the actions that are taking for the decision when it comes. >> if the supreme court ruled
8:01 pm
unconstitutional, and what they pushed forward to a single payer method? does the president favor a single payer method? what's the president favors the affordable care act. it was the right thing to do to provide insurance coverage to 30 million americans, to ensure that people with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied insurance coverage, children with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied health insurance. it was the right thing to do so that young americans could remain on their parents' health insurance policies rather than go without insurance. it was the right thing to do so that important preventive services like mammograms could be provided to millions of
8:02 pm
americans free. it was the right thing to do to ensure that seniors to face significant cost to the prescription drug program are helped in alleviating that cost. these are policy prescriptions. the president is awaiting the decision and we will assess the when it comes and move forward accordingly. >> members of his own party all -- are already waiting for them to rule unconstitutional. >> every opinion expressed about what the decision will be -- it does not surprise me some hold different opinions. >> you said you would not comment on something that may not happen. you seem to indicate that -- you are hopeful there will find the right -- >> general optimist.
8:03 pm
>> i do not want to selectively listen to that. i heard the hope that something could be worked out. you did not say whether or not -- there were meetings yesterday. are there meetings going on today? >> i do now have many meetings to read out to you. the meeting here today had been reported on was not because we let you know in advance. that reflected our good faith efforts to try to accommodate the committee and the leaders on this matter to avoid what is a wholly unnecessary vote scheduled for tomorrow. i do not have any new meetings to preview for you or read out to you. >> saying we cannot and everything we can is ridiculous seeing as the attorney general asked for a meeting with the
8:04 pm
chairman and the got one in an effort to resolve this. white house officials met with committee staffers just today. at the time, as you recall, the department of justice made a accommodation. they rejected it because they were not comfortable without seeing the documents justice department officials suggested they could be shown. in response, we in the administration reached out and showed them a sample of the documents so they could see firsthand the kinds of communications in contention. this would offer -- it would show how the department responded and would dispel any notion of an intent to mislead congress. these documents are all after the fact.
8:05 pm
this was a good-faith effort to reach an accommodation while still protecting the institutional prerogatives of the executive branch often championed by the same republicans criticizing us now. for political theater rather than conducting legitimate congressional oversight. the effort has been made on a number of occasions. it is consistent with an effort to try to be responsive and cooperative to legitimate interests through this episode. hopefully, one can hope republicans will at the last minute change their mind about deciding that -- to try to score political points out of this. there is always room for help. >> under. about after the fact, you just a couple of times in a briefing
8:06 pm
that all of the documents -- every page related to the operation itself, not after the fact has been turned over to congress. after you made that statement thursday a republican senator said, no, they are aware of other documents related to the operation itself the have not been turned over by the justice department. fare you contradicting that? >> yes. it clearly begins with the period after february 4, which is when the letter -- >> he is saying on the operation itself the has asked for other documents and the justice department has not turned them over. " i would refer you to the justice department for details on the 7600 documents that have been turned over. it is a matter of chronological observational fact that documents prior to that time that had to deal with the actual operation -- who designed it,
8:07 pm
who approved it, howard was deployed -- they have been provided because they predate that. the post documents have to deal in the administration over how to appropriately respond to media inquiries. as our deliberations that need to be privileged and protected because of the separation of powers and enshrined into our constitution. that is a principal asserted by administrations going back 30 years. >> the wildfires have been getting more dangerous and have -- what kind of update is the president getting? it seems like the situation is getting desperate. has he spoken to officials? what he did speak to the colorado gov. a while ago. he is being updated regularly.
8:08 pm
i will read to you further communications he has on this matter. firefighters, and said a management teams, fire engines, and other resources are being provided to supplement state and local resources as teams continue to respond to what you appropriately described as very serious fires across the west. more than 8400 personnel, 578 fire engines and 75 helicopters are operating on wildfires around the united states. more than half of federal while firefighting resources are stationed in colorado. federal partners work closely with first responders and firefighters from local state agencies to come back to wildfires throughout the country. fema has authorized three management assistance grants since june 9 to help cover the
8:09 pm
state and local cost for fighting the fires. 75% of the cost assessed after the fires is picked up by fema. they are working side by side with the colorado division of emergency management to help. there are coordinating the federal response to the wildfires and colorado and wyoming. in answer to your question, co- head. >> the phone call was on june 12 -- 17 days ago. why has he not had another phone call? >> when i have further communications of the president to read up to year, i will. >> if the action group is successful real implementing
8:10 pm
the plan coming up with guidelines for a political transition, how can they have confidence this will actually work? >> anything that depends on agreement and a promise to fulfill actions have to be viewed with skepticism. i take your point. the fact is, the transition plan he has drafted embodies the principles needed for any political transition. to lead to a peaceful democratic outcome that reflects the syrian people. international community coalescing around a transition plan is an important step in the process of further pressuring, further isolating and hopefully
8:11 pm
help to bring about a transition that we believe needs to -- or cannot take place without assad stepping aside from power. >> hillary clinton reiterated today russia and china could play a real role in this. is there any indication that are shifting their positions? they may be getting on their -- on the same page? >> i do not have any updates for you and i will not speak for those countries. i will tell you that we have been in regular consultations with the russians as well as the chinese, in particular the russians on this matter. it has been discussed by you and i as the fact that we have had differences with russia on syria. we are continuing to work with the russians to help bring about a goal that we both share, which is an end to violence and syria and a transition in syria
8:12 pm
-- a transition that we do not think can take place with assad in power. we continue to work with the russians and other international partners. i do not have any updates for you on where those conversations stand. cox has anything changed to make this more than just talking about a plan are implementing a plan? >> it is towards building a consensus around a transition that is essential for the syrian. -- syrian people is a step forward. assad is still in power. he continues to brutalize his own people. the situation is extremely volatile. as we have said in the past, there is not a great deal of time here for the international community to come together and act before the situation there essentially dissolves into a broader sectarian some -- civil war.
8:13 pm
we are working with our partners are jointly to try to avoid that outcome. >> i have one more health care. according to our latest poll, 37% of americans said they would be relieved if the health care law were found unconstitutional. why on the eve of the supreme court announcing it has the administration -- [unintelligible] >> we discuss this on a number of occasions over the months. there was an excellent reporting on the sheer volume in the millions and millions of dollars that was spent in an effort to discredit the affordable care act. the differential there and money spent was, i think, i opening. it reflects the challenge that we face. the president was the focus has been on crafting a policy that
8:14 pm
-- the president's focus has been crafting a policy that is most effective and efficient and expanding coverage that insures those with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied coverage or thrown off their health insurance plans and provides all the other benefits i have mentioned. that was his aim. i think we have been focused on implementing the law. as the implementation continues it has increased the number of americans who directly benefit from the affordable care act. >> do you need to shift your strategy -- >> i think i am very safe -- on said ground when i said i will not speculate on a decision that is relatively imminent. >> a general question. will the attorney general be at the congressional picnic
8:15 pm
tonight? cox i do not have -- [laughter] i have not seen the rsvp list. we will get back to you. >> do you know where the president will be when he finds out about the supreme court decision tomorrow? he will find out like everyone else does through wsj.com or some other good website. >> he will be in the war room in my office. [laughter] >> a lot of americans seem surprised her skeptical that the president of the united states would learn about something this important the same way everybody else does. there are curious about the cut -- the process. can you comment on the mechanics about how he learns about the
8:16 pm
supreme court's rulings because people do not believe it. >> turn on televisions and radios and computers and watch the scotus blog. >> people are just as skeptical. >> anybody who covers the supreme court knows it is pretty airtight. >> we will leave the last few minutes of this to go live to the united states house. providing for consideration of the resolution, house resolution 706. authorizing the committee on oversight and government reform to initiate or intervene in judicial proceedings to enforce certain subpoenas. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the house calendar and ordered printed.
8:17 pm
pursuant to house resolution 697 and rule 18, the chair declares the house in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for further consideration of h.r. 5972. will the gentleman from florida, mr. west, kindly take the chair. the chair: the house is in the committee of the whole house on the state of the union for the further consideration of h.r.
8:18 pm
5972, which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: a bill making appropriations for the departments of transportation and housing and urban development, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2013, and for other purposes. the chair: when the committee of the whole house rose earlier today, amendment number 11 printed in the congressional record offered by the gentleman from california, mr. mcclintock, had been disposed of and the bill had been read through page 150, line 9. for what purpose does the the gentlewoman from tennessee rise? mrs. blackburn: thank you, mr. chairman. i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by
8:19 pm
mrs. blackburn of tennessee, at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following, section, each amount made available by this act other than an amount required to be made available by a provision of law is hereby reduced by 1%. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized for five minutes. mrs. blackburn: thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate the recognition and i want to begin by thanking the committee for their extraordinarily hard work in identifying ways to cut spending. all of us hear from our constituents, they want us to reduce what the federal government spends. to be wise and proper stewards of the federal taxpayers' dollar. all too often they look at washington and they see a monument to waste of the american taxpayer dollar. now, for the legislation that is in front of us, fiscal year 2013 proposed funding slelf $51.6
8:20 pm
billion which is $1ings 9 billion below the president's -- $1.9 billion below the president's request. i think it is admirable we have saved nearly $2 billion below the president's request, however, we know that there is much more work that can be done, that should be done, that must be done. and therefore my 1% across-the-board spending reduction amendment will save taxpayers an additional $516 million. that is $516 million that will our children and our grandchildren will not have to pay back with interest. now, i'm fully aware of the strong opposition that many appropriators have for these across-the-board spending cuts. when i have offered these cuts, i have been told that, and i'm quoting, the cuts of this magnitude, quite honestly, go
8:21 pm
too deep. i have also heard that these 1% spending reductions would be, and i'm quoting, very damaging to our national security and to things that are important to life and property. however the taxpayers are demanding that the bureaucracy do what they are doing and save a penny on a dollar. and our governors are quite active in this arena. of course we have heard from former governor mitt romney, governor chris kristi, governor rick perry, governor mitch daniels, governor chris teen, just to name a few of our state executives. in the chairman's home state of iowa, former democratic governor chet codler issued a 10% across-the-board spending reduction. these across-the-board spending cuts are used around our country in a bipartisan fashion and the
8:22 pm
reason they are is because they work. they work. this is how you get results. in actually cutting into the baseline and reducing the outlays of government. they are effective because they cut spending within each agency. and force each agency to do a review and find the waste and find ways to preserve those precious dollars that are coming from the taxpayers. admiral mullen made a statement that the greatest risk to our nation's security is our nation's debt. mr. chairman, we all know that. the american people know that. they have grown ill and fatigued with what they see is waste of
8:23 pm
their money. here in washington, because this government never satisfies its appetite for the taxpayers' dollar, and because of that, because they think they can go to the well and ask for more, because they think they can go to the presses and print those dollars, they don't do the hard work of prioritizing. that is what we are to do here in this house. and in that spirit of forcing the actions of prioritizing, forcing the actions of the bureaucracy, having to save one penny on a dollar so that our children and grandchildren are not paying that back with interest, that is the reason that i bring these amendments. you know it's important because right now we are borrowing 40 cents of every dollar that we spend. we cannot afford this. it is incumbent upon us to make
8:24 pm
certain that we do the hard work, that we cut a little more, that we make the demands on the bureaucracy that our constituents are making on their businesses and on their family budgets. it is time for us to save just a penny on the dollar, make the cut, do it for our children and future generations. with that i yield the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman yield back the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? mr. olver: i seek the time in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, i strongly oppose this amendment. this amendment indiscriminately
8:25 pm
cuts programs in transportation and housing without any thought to the relative merits of the programs contained in this bill. for instance, they would result in fewer air traffic controllers, few pipeline safety inspectors, ensuring accidents do not occur, fewer vouchers for homeless veterans. reduce salaries and expenses accounts for all of the departments. in all areas where there are -- in some of the areas, some of the agencies, salaries and expenses is almost everything in the agency. do the same thing for all the capital accounts, the construction accounts, and basically this is an infrastructure bill that does a
8:26 pm
lot of capital expenditures. all of this would be done across the board. more generally investments in our transportation and housing infrastructure will be reduced and the associated jobs will be lost. there will be from the amendment itself there will be public job loss, also there will be jobs lost because of the loss in infrastructure which is important to this country. and really critical. i want to point out that the sponsor of this legislation is again reneging on her word. she voted for last summer's budget control act that set this year's spending limits. the ryan budget broke that agreement and lowered spending levels, sponsor of this amendment breaks the agreement again by reducing discretionary funding even further. i strongly urge members to oppose this amendment. i yield back my time.
8:27 pm
the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa rise? mr. latham: move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i thank the chairman. i commend the the gentlewoman from tennessee for persist tense and -- persistence and all of her work as far as trying to get a handle on the spending. i'd just like to make a couple points. she mentioned the word $2 billion below the president's request. we are actually $4 billion, almost $4 billion below last year's spending in this bill. we have the largest decrease percentagewise than any of the appropriation bills. and we have worked very, very hard to craft a bill that actually enacted that type of spending cuts, but also funded the high priority items that are in this bill. and it's with reluctance i
8:28 pm
oppose her amount amendment. i'll just say we are -- amendment. i'll just say we are within the 30 -b allocations that were in the ryan budget. that was the debate then as to what funding levels to be at. there are some very important infrastructure issues that would be harmed by this when we look at the highway trust fund, funding that would be cut, transit programs, veterans, homeless vouchers, we have done everything we could to try to have a balanced bill that actually put priorities after having many hearings, working through this bill on a line by line basis. i'm not sure that just a across-the-board cut that cuts everything arbitrarily is the way to go. i would certainly we are all very, very concerned about the budget, but i would just with
8:29 pm
reluctance just oppose this amendment and if the gentlelady would -- i would be glad to yield some time to the gentlelady. mrs. blackburn: i thank the chairman for yielding. as i said at the beginning i applaud the committee for the good work they have done. i think when you are broke, though, that what we have to do is say now is the time to make further cuts. to the ranking member, it's not indiscriminate, this is the way our governors have found to arrive at balancing a budget. is looking at every agency and say get in there, do the heavy lift, and find this. and the result we want is to preserve the foundation of this great nation for our children and grandchildren. are you saying that salaries and expenses are more important than the future of these children who are going to have to pay this debt back with interest? $16 trillion worth of debt and growing. and you got to pay it back. my two grandchildren, my
8:30 pm
children, is it fair to look at them and say, you're going to spend over half of what you earn? i know that it is tough. as the gentleman inferred, i'm at it again. yes, you're right, mr. chairman. i am at it again. let me tell you something, i'm going to be at it again and again and again, just as i have every single year that i have been a member of this house because preserving the firm financial footing of this nation is worth coming at it again and again and again until we get the job done. . it has worked for our city, it has worked for our counties, it has worked for our states, it will work for this nation that is so richly blessed. we need to have titanium back bones to get the job done. i yield back to the chairman.
8:31 pm
the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from tennessee. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. mrs. blackburn: mr. mr. chairman -- mr. chairman, i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: the amendment was not agreed to. pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from tennessee will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 13, printed in the congressional record, offered by mr. mcclintock of california. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five mins. mr. mcclintock: thank you, mr. chairman. this for bids further federal expenditures for the central
8:32 pm
subway project in san francisco. this project is a 1.7 mile subway that's estimated to cost $1.6 billion. and these cost estimates continue to rise. its baseline budget has more than doubled in nine years and shows no sign of slowing. the current estimate brings the cost to nearly $1 billion per mile. that's about five times the cost per lane mile of boston's scandalous big dig. it was spowed to link local light rail and bus lines with cal train and bay area rapid transit but it's so badly designed that it bypasses 25 of the 30 light rail and bus lines it crosses. to add insult to insanity, it dismantles the seamless light rail to bart connection currently available to passengers available at market street, requiring them to work nearly a quarter mile to make
8:33 pm
the new connection. experts estimate it will cost commuters between five and 10 minutes of additional commuting time on every segment of the route. "the wall street journal" calls it, quote, a case study in government incompetence and wasted taxpayer money. and they're not alone. the civil grand jury in san francisco has vigorously recommended the project be scrapped, warning that maintenance costs alone could ultimately bankrupt san francisco's muni. the former chairman of the san francisco transportation agency has called it, quote, one of the costliest mistakes in the city's history. even the sponsors estimate that it will increase ridership byless than 1% and there's vigorous debate that this project is far too optimistic. i think margaret okizumi, the executive director of the bay
8:34 pm
rill alliance, put it best when she said, quote, too many times we've seen money for public transit used to primarily benefit people who would profit financially while making transit less convenient for actual transit riders. voters approve money for transit because they want transit to be more available. it would be tragic if billions were spent on something that made it unable to sustain its overall transit service, end quote. mr. chairman this administration is attempting to put federal taxpayers, our constituents or then hook for nearly $1 billion of the cost of this folly through new start program, more than 60% of the entire project. we have already squandered $123 million on it we don't have. this amendment forebids another dime of our constituents' money being wasted on this
8:35 pm
boondoggle. mr. chairman, you may be wondering, why should your constituents pay nearly $1 billion for a purely local transportation project in san francisco that is opposed by a broad, bipartisan coalition of san franciscoians including the sierra club, save munii, a grass rootsing orny sargse of muni riders, the coalition of san francisco neighborhoods and three of the four local newspapers serving san francisco. why indeed? excuse me, i don't have an answer to that question. but those who vote against this amendment had better have one when their constituents ask what in the world were you thinking? i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? mr. olver: i claim time in opposition to the amendment.
8:36 pm
the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: mr. chairman, from the looks of it, the gentleman from california has quite a fight going on with sierra club, three of the four major newspapers, i don't know which ones they are, exactly, i department know there were three or four major newspapers in san francisco. most places these days, if they have one, they're doing very well. and with the state legislature in california as well. i strongly oppose this amendment and frankly i'm disappointed by what it represents. this project, i think, is the perfect -- is a perfect, maybe not perfect, very good example of the types of infrastructure projects our urban -- our major urban areas need to remain
8:37 pm
economically strong, provide job creation, now and critical access to jobs in the future. in particular in california, six of the 50 largest metropolitan areas in this country exist in the -- those with over a million population, exist in the state of california. california also happens to have five adecisional ones which have five -- which have 500,000 to one million in population. seven of those 11 are growing by as much as 25%. by more than 25% per year. actually. and these are exactly the sort of places all of them are the sort of places that need investment and continued investment, continued assistance from the federal
8:38 pm
government. they're putting a serious and major amount of money, our authorization plans which we extend and our are still under extension and hope, i think most people here hope and understand that we need to have a re-authorization sometime within the next few days, probably, that the program in california is one that's full hi authorized and ready to go. population density in the area that is involved in this particular program is over 50,000 people per square mile. ultimately the project will tie together one of the fastest growing sections of san francisco with one of the densest neighborhoods in the nation. and provide key regional connections with commuter rule and future high speed rail programs. the project has been thoroughly
8:39 pm
reviewed by the f.t.a., the state of california, local authorities determined that it was of high value. in addition the chairman included $100 million in the underlying bill as an acknowledgment that this project is moving and will improve transportation and create construction jobs in the bay area. the bay area needs construction jobs as well as we need construction jobs in every part of this nation. in order to have a robust economy. now, i have a press release which arrived today just to add to the game, the california transportation commission, unanimously approved commitment of $61 million in state high speed rail connectivity funds to the central south subway project. this very project this very day.
8:40 pm
i also have here with me the editorial from the san francisco examiner, i'm not sure whether that's one of your major newspapers in the area or not but in support of this program. i offer it and ask unanimous concept that it be printed in the record. the chair: the request is covered by general leave. mr. olver: thank you, mr. chairman for that and so i will submit it for the record. i understand that the sponsor might not support public transportation. but when the singles out one -- but when he singles out one project it's hard to wonder if his opposition is based on some kind of internal politics and
8:41 pm
not on soubd policy. i oppose this amendment and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. mr. olver: i ask for the yeas and nays. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment of the gentleman from california will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota rise? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the deskful the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. will the gentleman specify which amendment?
8:42 pm
>> h.r. -- amendment to 5972 and number 69. the chair: clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. cravaack of minnesota. at the end of the -- insert the following, none of the funds in this act may be used by the secretary of transportation to reserge or implement a distance-based fee system, commonly referred to as miles traveled, to levy a fee on the vehicle user based on the distance traveled. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. cravaack: thank you, mr. chairman. i rise to support my amendment which would prohibit the utilization of funds to research or implement a fee per mile system. it would levy a fee based on the distance traveled. mr. speaker, it is no secret
8:43 pm
that our current highway trust fund system is going bankrupt. the federal gas tax designed to support the fund finds itself increasingly unable to pay for better roads, bridges and rail due to several factors. people are driving less due to a weak economy and high gas prices. the creation of more fuel efficient cars allow people to fill up less frequently at the pump. and let's not forget how congress has been raiding the gas tax proceeds for decades to fund alternative transportation activities that in no way help maintain the bridges or roads we drive, such as building bike paths and planting nowers. there's an important need to come up with a new, better idea on how to appropriately fund our highway trust fund system. however, i am here to tell you today that the concept of using vehicle miles traveled fee system is not one of those better ideas. requiring people to pay for the miles they travel each year is not acceptable on a number of levels. the v.m.t. tax would be
8:44 pm
expensive to implement because every car would need to be fitted with a device to record the miles driven and transmit that to the government database. it would cost millions to d install them in new vehicles and many millions more if older veegs and motorcycles are expected to be retrofitted with these devices. the cost required to administration this is inefficient. especially compared to the gas tax which proceeds in an inefficient form of tax case that is collected from refineries. further, the electronic tracking device poses a significant privacy concern. and a see rear threat to our private information should any one of these systems be hacked or corrupted. the potential for privacy abuses is a hazard waiting to happen. government databases have already been compromised in the past and this government system
8:45 pm
would be no exception. finally, the v.m.t. tax would impose a regressive tax, that would hit constituents in rural districts like minnesota's eighth congressional district, the district that i represent. harder than any others. my skit constituents often have to drive miles more than urban counterparts to perform the same daily tasks like going to work, grocery shopping, dropping the kids off at cool and making deliveries for their small businesses. my constituents are already struggling to make ends meet with the current gas prices. penalizing them for nothing more than living in a rural area will put them over the edge. in sum, the v.m.t. tax would produce a stongly negative reaction from the public and for good reason. americans don't like paying for the gas tax and they are sure going to be even more unhappy about having to deal with an administrative and privacy nightmare that v.m.t. promises. therefore, i urge my colleagues to join me in support of my amendment which would prevent
8:46 pm
the secretary of transportation from using funds to research or implement this hampleful fee. thank you, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. . the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa rise? mr. latham: strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i thank the chairman. i would like to join with the gentleman here in support of this amendment. i think -- a couple points. if he represents a rural district, this is an enormous issue. oftentimes on average jobs will pay less than -- in urban areas to begin with, on average a lot of these folks have to drive long distances to work. we got people in my district today that drive 50 and 60 miles one way to their job every day. and this would be an enormous hardship on these folks. i would also add that the
8:47 pm
secretary of transportation and the administration two years ago when we were trying to get a highway bill done, that the administration took this off the table. they said we are not going to do this. and so i don't see why the secretary would need to do research or any kind of means of implementation if in fact they so strongly oppose this type of taxation. for several different reasons i commend the gentleman on this amendment and rise in support. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? mr. olver: i claim the time in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: thank you very much, mr. chairman. i oppose this amendment.
8:48 pm
strongly, but not because i like a v.m.t. particularly, and not that i do not understand that in rural areas this can be very burdensome. however, we have to have additional roaf new -- revenue. the reason our infrastructure is in decline is simple. we are simply not raising enough revenue, to fund our infrastructure needs. yet we have report after report from the american society of civil engineers, infrastructure reported card, gives us a d, estimating that more than $2 trillion in investment is needed in our system. much of it gas of at least $27
8:49 pm
billion each year from the d.o.t.'s own most recent conditions and performance report, that there is a $27 billion per year gap just to maintain current system of the highways and bridges in the state of good repair. the gas tax has not been raised since 1993. the total amount of revenue that has been raised 10 years ago was only a couple billion dollars lower than it is now, 10, 11 years later. we know that the vehicles that are being produced now correctly, and we must do this, are more efficient than they were earlier and so gasoline tax doesn't bring in as much money. that's fine, but you still have to have the revenue to build a transportation infrastructure program that is going to be good
8:50 pm
that will keep the economy of the country strong. every good and every product of this country has to move along an efficient transportation system covering all of our modes of transportation, and has to be kept up to good repair and for the major population growth, which continues at 10% every decade, with all these major metropolitan areas going up and up and up in population, you have to have a lot of new infrastructure bills and you have to maintain the old infrastructure and the older communities, or everybody's going to be behind. even the rural areas. the rural areas, even though ma of them -- the gentleman's part of the country there are
8:51 pm
states where more than half, several states, at least 10 states that have more than half of all their county losing population, but to allow the infrastructure the highway system to fall apart in those places means you doom those areas to an economic future which is going to be very bleak, indeed. so the amendment is -- it's unfortunate because we are probably going to have to use different kinds of money raising mechanisms and different parts of the country. and this one makes it even not possible for the administration to think about using the vehicle miles even in the urban, in the major urban areas, of the country.
8:52 pm
in any case, i oppose the amendment. i know quite well what the result of my opposition is going to be, but i think we have to have ultimately, we have to somehow gain the courage and the will to raise the revenue that is necessary in order to keep our economy strong. the transportation system in its totality represents close to 25% of the whole economy in this country. and you cannot have a viable, robust economy with the jobs that we need if we do not figure out how to do what's needed until all parts of the country. i yield.
8:53 pm
mr. latham: i appreciate what my good friend from massachusetts was talking about. i think you clearly remembered the testimony from secretary lahood -- the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia rise? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> i yield to the chair. mr. latham: i thank the gentleman very much. i just want to talk with the chairman about the subject matter that the gentleman from massachusetts brought that the secretary of transportation came before the subcommittee. we are talking about the difficulty we are having as far as trying to write an appropriation bill with no new authorization.
8:54 pm
the secretary on several different occasions said that he would not entertain and they would strongly oppose both an increase in the gas tax and vehicle miles driven. and the gentleman i'm sure from massachusetts remembers that testimony very clearly. so i would just suggest that maybe someone should talk to the administration about finding sources for funding because the secretary has taken every possibility off of the table to fund a new highway bill. now we are apparently looking at re-authorization and finding other unique ways of funding rather than user fees or gas tax or miles driven or registration fees, whatever, they have taken off the table. i would suggest the gentleman from massachusetts would maybe visit with mr. lahood at the transportation department. with that i appreciate the gentleman yielding.
8:55 pm
mr. olver: did you yield time to me? the chair: the gentleman yields his time. mr. olver: that will save me from trying to figure out, remember exactly what i have to say to get more of my own time, mr. chairman. somewhere arong the way it will come back to me but in the midst of a discussion i'm not likely to come up with it easily. in any case i recognize exactly what the gentleman -- the chairman of the committee is saying. it will be interesting to see what the authorizers come up with. i hope you have some ideas as to what they are going to do because with the position that i am taking of the need for the infrastructure development in this country, both state of good repair, just repairing it, keeping it going, and then the additional infrastructure that is needed because of growth in
8:56 pm
populations, that is there and we must solve the problem. it's not just the executive's problem. it's not just our problem. it's a problem for all of us. and this takes one possible piece out of the mix. that could be part of a mix, just simply takes it off the table. and that i object to as somebody that is not going to be here next year when you may have to come up with the solution, i object to that being taken off the table. i oppose the amendment. the chair: the gentleman reclaims his time? >> reclaim my time. i yield to the gentleman. >> i thank the gentleman for yielding. i can give you my commitment i believe in a robust transportation system within the united states. mr. cravaack: we need it for economy and commerce. we understand that. but we definitely, the v.m.t. is
8:57 pm
a toxic part of this puzzle that we just can't use. i look forward to finding other alternate -- alternative sources to fund a robust system, transportation system that i believe the united states needs. i thank you very much for the gentleman's comments. i yield back. mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman from virginia controls the time. >> i yield back my time, mr. chairman. the chair: yields back his time. the gentleman from massachusetts is recognized, five minutes. mr. olver: at this time i would be short. i wish the gentleman from minnesota great luck in solving this one and i am so happy for the people on that side of the aisle who must be just ecstatic to say they will take all these things off the table. what are you going to do when you have to have jobs and a robust economy in this largest
8:58 pm
economy in the world? i yield to my chairman. mr. latham: if you remember also during the hearings with the secretary, i asked that very question of the secretary, and you take the gas tax, vehicle miles traveled off the table, i said let's find a way to do this. well, he said we need to sit down at the table and discuss this. i said, mr. secretary, you are at a table, i'll be glad to come around and sit with you, and we'll discuss it. you come up with some ideas. he came up with zero ideas, if you remember that. i yield back to the gentleman. mr. olver: reclaiming my time. at my age i can't remember what happened several days ago, and -- but it will fully come back. eventually it slowly comes back. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from
8:59 pm
minnesota. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota seek recognition? mr. cravaack: i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the title. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. cravaack of minnesota. at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following, section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used in furtherance of the implementation of the european union greenhouse gas emissions trading scheme for aviation activities established by european union directive 2008/101/e.c. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. cravaack: i rise in strong support of this bipartisan amendment. this amendment is a simple one.
9:00 pm
it prohibits the use of taxpayer funds in furtherance of the implementation of the european union's emissions trading scheme. starting in january, the european union began to unilaterally apply the emissions trading scheme, e.t.s., to civil aviation operators landing or departing from one of the e.u. member states, under the scheme, e.u. member states will require international carriers and operators to pay emission allowances and in some cases penalties for carbon emissions resulting on their operations. . it will apply to the entire lept of the flight even outside european air space. far flight leaving los angeles to london, taxes would be levied not only for the portion of the flight over the united kingdom but also for portions of the flight over the united states and international waters. despite serious legal issues and objections by the majority of the international community
9:01 pm
including the united states, india, russia, china and the international civil aviation association, the e.u. ises preing ahead with its plans. russia, china, and india are taking very clear actions in opposition to the e.u.'s emission scheme. china and india directed their air carriers not to comply with the e.u.'s e.t.s. requirements. china delayed airbus orders, india is threatening in kind retaliation and russia is threatening to not allow air space access. putting this on u.s. operators without the consent of the u.s. government raises serious question of u.s. law. the emissions trading scheme will actually harm efforts to reduce global aviation emissions. by taking money away from airline industry that would otherwise be invested in
9:02 pm
nextgen technologies and purchase of new aircraft, to proven methods for improving environmental performance, the e.u. is siphoning scarce money to be used as member states see fit. a better approach to address the aviation impact is to work with the international civil aviation community through the international civil aviation to address serious issues to reduce emissions. however, because they have made no effort to retract the trading scheme, this is necessary to make sure american taxpayer dollars won't be used to further the europeans' unilateral and questionable scheme. last october, the house passed h.r. 2954, which directs the secretary of transportation to prohibit u.s. carriers from participating in this illegal scheme. a companion bill has been introduced in the senate. it's my hope that the senate will move quickly toward its
9:03 pm
passage. that legislation, along with this amendment to the transportation appropriations for fiscal year 2013 will send a very strong message to our european friends that illegal and unilateral action to address the aviation emissions is not the proper course of action to deal with this issue. this must be a con enis -- consensus driven solution not an international mandate. thank you, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek reck anything? >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i thank the distinguished gentleman, the chairman, for the time. let me just rise in strong support of this amendment. this, i think, is one of the most outrageous, offensive tacks i have ever heard of, to be able to, the idea of taxes u.s. travelers from any point in the united states just because they're traveling to a destination in europe is simply
9:04 pm
outrageous. it's going to be devastating to u.s. carriers and it's something that we have got to put a stop to. like the gentleman talked about, the international community, strong opposition, i think on a bipartisan basis, everyone is opposed to this. it is again, a far overreach, it is unnecessary, it is simply wrong. i really appreciate the gentleman's work on this to have this amendment brought forward to at least the first step in stopping this very, very, i think, egregious new tax and with that, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: the european union has implemented an emotions trading regimen as a means of
9:05 pm
reducing greenhouse gas emotion 20's% below 1990 levels. they're not succeeding very much, they are putting in a fairly hard effort to do that, but the emissions, greenhouse gas emotions continue to go up. the co-2 percentage in the atmosphere is now in the year 2012 about 50% higher than it has been at any time in the last 500,000 years. and going up, continuing to go up. so -- but we're not going to sell climate change issues tonight, so i understand that this amendment will be adopted and -- but the effort is going
9:06 pm
to have to eventually go on to deal with our climate change. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from minnesota. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair of chair, the ayes -- in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it, the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. price of georgia. at the end of the bill before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the amounts made available by this act may be used by the pipeline and hazardous materials safety administration to require the placement of line markers under section 195.410-a-1 of title 49, code of federal regulations
9:07 pm
other than at public road crossings and railroad crossings. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. price: thank you, mr. chairman. we have all heard about many regulations that come from this town that seem to be ridiculous, sometimes, they're inock louse, sometimes humorous. these are regulations that often don't help anybody at all. sometimes, however, they harm real people's lives and homes and their businesses. last year, mr. chairman, along a half mile stretch of remington road in chambley, georgia, under requirement from the pipeline and hazardous waste materials was forced to place 17 new hazard markers on the front lawns of homes in subquigs. that brought the total number of hazard markers to 47. 47 within a half mile stretch. a half mile stretch of road in
9:08 pm
a residential subdivision where there's no new construction and the pipeline's been there for decades. you talk about ridiculous. the regulation states, quote, markers must be located at each public road cross, each railroad crossing, in such numbers along the remainder of the buried line so its placement is known. though the regulation hant changed, its interprets ahas. we sent a letter to the them. they said, while they specify the minimum number of line markers, they don't define the maximum number. they are allowed to exceed the minimum. look at this front lawn here. five or six markers in the front lawn of a residential
9:09 pm
area. career i -- clearly this is absurd. i'm certain there are other communities across this great country that are similarly affected by an overso louse regulator. this doesn't help a soul but what it does is likely depress property values at a challenging time for home owners. let's put common sense back in government this amendment i've offered today is designed to stop the pipeline and hazardous materials safety regulation from broadly interpreting the regulations in the future by ensuring that no funds shall be used to require the placement of line markers other than at road crossings and railroad crossings. we have struggled to find the right avenue to address the issue and hopefully we'll be able to get the attention of these wonderful folks. while not possible to have this amendment brought to conclusion on this legislation, i know the chairman is as interested as i in ending the overbearing regulatory scheme that seems to have overtaken every single department in this town. if the chairman would be
9:10 pm
desirous, i'd be happy to yield to hem for a comment. mr. latham: i thank the gentleman for yielding. obviously we all want pipeline safety. that's number one issue. but what you're talking about is truly beyond the pale as far as any kind of common sense. we've got to find a balance like you've talked about and that's what the overreach that we're seeing, in so many areas of the federal government, causes things like this that are simply nonsense call. i appreciate the gentleman for bringing the issue forward. and would want to work with him in the future to find a resolution to your concerns. the chair: i thank the chairman and i appreciate that. this is simply ridiculous. if that's your front lawn, mr. chairman, that's the last place you want to see those signs in your neighborhood in your residential area. i appreciate the chance to
9:11 pm
bring this amendment, i ask unanimous consent to withdraw the amendment. the chair: without objection, the amendment is withdrawn. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> thank you, mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 8 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. posey of florida. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. posey: thank you, mr. chairman. my amendment is very simple, it prohibits taxpayer dollars from being used for the department of transportation's international highway technology scanning programming. according to the department of transportation, this program enables the department's officials to access innovative technologies and practices in other countries that could significantly improve our nation's highways. i and most taxpayers really don't have any problem with that. if someone else has a good idea and we can and we should learn from that. but most taxpayers were outraged when abc news and
9:12 pm
citizens against government waste highlighted that this program was bankrolling globetrotting junkets across the world. one such trip featured a 1746 day orteal to australia, sweden, the netherlands and great britain to look at billboards. all the while, wracking up taxpayer bills at five-star hotels and restaurants. among the important research conducted by the team, a trip to scotland to evaluate road furniture along rural roads. and in the netherlands, they took a serious look at examples of outdoor advertising. when the federal government is up to its neck in debt, such expenditures truly are an abuse of taxpayers. as a result, citizens against government waste was able to apply enough pressure to the agency to suspend the $1.2 million annual program. we're not sure what suspend means, if it's for a day, a week, or a month.
9:13 pm
abc news reported that upwards of $12 million has been spent on the program since the year 2000. i see the suspension of the program by secretary lahood as a good start but there are no guarantees that such waste will not resume as nothing in law would prevent the program from being resurrected in the future. this amendment very simply will ensure that the program will not come back to life during the fiscal year 2013. thank you, mr. chairman. washington is approaching another trillion-plus deficit and we cannot afford five-star junkets. i urge support of the amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. latham: i rise in support of theament and appreciate very much the gentleman from florida bringing this issue to the attention of the house and again, very strongly support
9:14 pm
his proposal to do away with this wasteful spending and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yield back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from florida. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california seek recognition? >> mr. chairman, i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized for five minutes. ms. richardson: i rise today in opposition to a possible attempt for a member to bring forward an amendment which would prohibit any funds in h.r. 5972 from being used toward the california high speed rail project. as a member of the house committee on transportation and infra-- and infrastuckture and co-share of the california high speed rail congressional caucus, this spronlt a priority of my state and the voters who agreed to move our state into
9:15 pm
the 21st century and to be able to be competitive tpwhrobally. our nation's ability to move goods and people is essential to develop and main a strong economy and this project is critical to meeting the state's growing transportation needs. in fact, traffic congestion in california is increasing by 10% each year and it's estimated the state's airports will reach capacity by 2030. as california's population continues to boom, we must invest in alternative systems that will remedy this constant congestion and help to protect the health and environment of local communities. now, i, as a member of the transportation committee, i happen to have the opportunity to participate with chirme mica when we went to the central valley to talk about the possibility of moving forward on high speed rail. and admittedly, there were concerns brought forward but there were far more supporters who wanned to see high speed rail move forward than those
9:16 pm
who were opposed. again, i want to stress that the voters in california took it upon themselves to tax themselves as an independent state poddy, to tax themselves to move forward on high speed rail. so who are we in the federal government to prohibit providing funds that might match to enable that project to move forward. given the speed limitations in the northeast corridor it seems to me it would be ill-advised to deny california and this country the efficient transportation options that many of us so richly need, especially knowing that california's one of the most traveled areas in this country. as a result even the earliest investments would be helpful before this project is completed. now is the time to make smart and long-sighted investments for alternatives, to congested highways and simultaneously to create jobs. mr. speaker, we have before us an opportunity to support american workers for today by
9:17 pm
putting america on the road to recovery, while more importantly developing a world class rail system that we could compete with our competitors like china. proper funding for the california high speed rail project is a necessity for the success of california and the success of the united states. thank you and i yield back the balance ofy time. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. griffith of virginia. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available in this act may be used for any new grant under the livable communities program of the department of transportation or the sustainable communities program of the department of housing and urban development, or to implement any transfer of funds for any such new grant. the chair: the gentleman is
9:18 pm
recognized for five minutes. mr. griffith: thank you, mr. chairman. today i rise to offer an amendment that would prohibit the department of transportation and the department of housing and urban development from issuing any new, livable or sustainable community grants. while the appropriations committee did not include any new funds for these grants, my amendment goes a step further to ensure that neither the department of transportation nor the housing secretary can attempt to transfer any of their department's discretionary funding. in 2009 under the direction of president obama e.p.a., the department of transportation and h.u.d. began the partnership for sustainable communities, a joint venture to provide millions of dollars to local communities to entice them to buy into the president's sustainable development agenda. over 2010 and 2011 d.o.t. and h.u.d. awarded approximately $96 million in grant funding for sustainable and livable community initiatives. however, these programs were never authorized by congress. in fact, the financial services
9:19 pm
committee, who has authority over h.u.d. programs, said that the sustainable communities initiative, which has yet to be authorized by the committee, should not be funded at the expense of other critical, affordable housing programs. this opinion of the sustainable communities program by the financial services committee was bipartisan and unanimous. last year, thankfully, no new funding was provided for sustainable community grants, but the conference committee reminded the secretary that these efforts were eligible activities under other programs, meaning funding for the sustainable community grants could have been obtained by shifting funding. this amendment would shift -- would prevent that shifting. i do not believe the federal government should be enticing our local and state governments with this money to get them to buy into the president's sustainable development agenda that cedes some local or state authority to federal or
9:20 pm
international bureaucracies and governing boards. i commend the appropriations committee for not giving any new funds to these unauthorized grants. this amendment makes it clear that these activities should not be continued at d.o.t. or h.u.d. under any circumstances. as robert frost wrote, good fences make good neighbors. this amendment will put up a fence to prevent shifting funding to a program this congress has not approved. and it sends a message that our various states and local communities should be in control of their housing, transportation and zoning policies and i yield back, mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i appreciate the gentleman having given me the time and i just rise in strong support of this amendment. let me just say that this has
9:21 pm
been a subject of great discussion with the ranking member and myself over time. but to me, i hope the people of the house understand and the american people understand what an outright waste of money that these projects have oftentimes become. everybody here is talking about we need more money for infrastructure, transportation, let's get the trust fund, build up, we're trying to find new ways of funding. i hope everyone understands that two years ago, before we got control of this committee, they took $150 million out of the highway trust fund to pay for sustainability projects and grants. that's rather interesting, when it's an unauthorized program no one even has a definition of what a sustainable community is. there is no definition of where this money could go. this is $150 million and people
9:22 pm
talk about all the projects at home and highways in disrepair, bridges falling down and we're spending $150 million out that have trust fund for things that aren't even defined and they're not authorized. mr. chairman, it is outrageous. i just spoke with the secretary of h.u.d. a few weeks ago on this issue because i have zeroed it out in this bill. there's no money for sustainable communities, whatever that is. and using an example the secretary gave me of a good project would be to take millions of dollars from the federal government and give it in the area in north dakota where they're having the expansion of the oil boom. the state of north dakota has billions of dollars in surplus, they have more money than they know what to do with and yet the secretary says, we take the
9:23 pm
sustainable community dollars from the federal government that we're borrowing 40 cents on the dollar from china and give it to north dakota to find out where they should pup th put up their buildings -- put up their buildings in the oil boom area. i'm sorry but i think they can afford to do thats themselves -- themselves. so i would very strongly support -- do that themselves. so i would very strongly support the gentleman's amendment. this is money that's coming out of the trust fund and everybody here talks about roots in disrepair, bridge -- roads in disrepair, bridges falling down, all we need to do to help for infrastructure and for jobs and we're giving it to places like north dakota. i'm sorry but this is a waste of money, ill defined, unaltogether riced -- unaltogether riced and i would support -- unauthorized and i would support the gentleman's amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognize for five minutes. mr. olver: again, i understand
9:24 pm
my very limited position here on this one. but i do rise in opposition to the amendment. i am a strong supporter of the sustainable communities program and i am disappointed that there's no funding in this bill for sustainable communities. i've heard the complaints about the sustainable communities program isn't authorized. well, it is a cdbg program that's authorized yet with you include funding for that program in the -- yet we include funding for that program in the bill and have for years. it has not been individually authorized in quite some period of time. the program actually has some good purposes, it integrates federal, state and local investment activity in housing, land use, economic and work
9:25 pm
force development and transportation. and at a time when budget -- when we're under budget constraints, it's fairly important, if not critical, that support for regional and local planning is available to local communities, to help localities to achieve the greatest short and long-term benefit for citizens. and this has been used -- particularly -- in the first two years, the two years that the program has been used, and it is a pilot program basically, a demonstration program, it's been used in both urban and rural areas and ones that are little more than a city or a metropolitan area or a small group of counties, up to a
9:26 pm
broader group that might cross state lines, where there are interest across those state lines and the people wanted to do it. it was always one purely of applications from groups of people, groups of people at the local level, organizations at the local and regional level that would put forward a proposal to do that kind of integration and joint planning with the federal government, the state governments and the local governments as to who they wanted to see their area -- as to how they wanted to see their area grow. so i think it is an activity that we ought to have some opportunity for but i know that that's not going to happen tonight so i simply -- i simply regret that that's -- that that is the way things are. i oppose the amendment and know that it will be adopted.
9:27 pm
the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from virginia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. flores of texas. at the end of the bill, before the short title add the following new section, section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used to enforce section 526 of the energy independence and security act of 2007, public law 110-140, 42, u.s.c., 17142. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes.
9:28 pm
mr. flores: thank you, mr. chairman. i rise to offer an amendment which addresses another misguided and restrictive federal regulation. section 526 of the energy independence and security act prevents federal agencies from entering into contracts for the procurement of fuels unless their life cycle of greenhouse gas emissions are less than or equal to emissions from an equivalent conventional fuel produced from conventional petroleum sources. in summary, my amendment would stop the government from enforcing this ban on all federal agencies funded by the transportation, housing and urban development appropriations bill. the initial purpose of section 526 was to stop the defense department's plans to buy and develop coal-based and/or coal-to-liquids jet fuel. this restriction was based on the opinion of some environmentalists that coal-based jet fuel might produce more greenhouse gas emissions than traditional petroleum-derived fuels. unfortunately section 526's ban on fuel choices has been
9:29 pm
expanded to include all federal agencies, not just the defense department. this is why i'm offering this amendment to the transportation and housing and urban development appropriations bill. federal agencies should not be burdened with wasting their time studying fuel restrictions when there is a simple fix. and that fix is to not restrict our fuel choices based on extreme environmental views, bad policies and misguided regulations like those in section 526. placing limits on federal agency's fuel choices is an unacceptable precedent set in regard to america's energy independence and our national security. mr. chairman, section 526 restrictions make our nation more dependent on middle eastern oil, stopping the impact of section 526 will help us to promote american energy and improve the american deme and -- economy and create american jobs. we must ensure that our military has adequate fuel resources so they can rely on domestic and more stable sources of fuel. with increasing competition for energy and fuel resources and
9:30 pm
with the continued volatility and instability in the middle east, it is now more important than ever for our country to become more energy independent and develop and produce all of our domestic income resources. mr. chairman, in some circles there's a misconception that my amendment somehow prevents the federal government and our military from being able to procure and use alternative fuels such as biofuels. mr. chairman, this viewpoint is categorically false. all my amendment does is allow the federal purchase of fuels, particularly our military, to be able to acquire the fuels that most efficiently meet their needs. you offer -- i offered a similar amendment and it passed with bipartisan support. my identical amendments to the three other appropriations bills -- excuse me, the three other f.y. 2013 appropriations bills also passed by a voice vote. my friend, mr. conaway, also had language added to the defense
9:31 pm
authorization bill to exempt the defense department from this burdensome regulation. to summarize the problems with section 526, number one, it increases relicense on middle eastern oil, it hurts military readiness, national security and energy security. number three, it also prevents the potential increased uses of some sources of safe, clean, efficient american oil and gas. number four, it hurts american jobs and the american economy. five, last but not least, it costs our taxpayers more of their hard-earned dollars. my amendment fixes these problems and i urge my colleagues to support the massage of this commonsense amendment. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. flores: i reserved. oh, i can't. i yield back. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i move to strike the -- strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i rise in support
9:32 pm
of this amendment and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. burgess of texas. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available in this act may be qused i by the secretary of -- may be qused by the secretary of transportation to urge a person to one operate an unmanned aircraft for the purpose in whole or in part of using the unmanned aircraft system as a weapon or to
9:33 pm
deliver a weapon against a person or property or two, to manufacture, sell or distribute an unmanned aircraft system or a component thereof for use in the national air space system as a weapon or to deliver a weapon against a person or property. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i reserve a point of order on the gentleman's amendment. choim the point of order is reserve. the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. burgess: i thank the chairman. there's been a lot of discussion about the use of unmanned aircraft, commonly referred to as drones, in the united states air space, and rightly so. beginning with the f.a.a. re-authorization bill which passed this house earlier in the year, the expansion of the use of unmanned aerial vehicles in the continental united states was expanded. arguably, this was a useful expansion because we have vast
9:34 pm
areas of our border which are difficult to monitor. sometimes there are search and rescue ocusheses in rough terrain where an unmanned aerial vehicle may be indispensable. since that time, there have been a growing body of people concerned about the effect of allowing these vehicles to surveil system, there's been audiocassette about the e.p.a. monitoring the herd size and grazing habits of farmers. these are questions that need to be answered. but then in recent we can -- recent weeks, i became aware of some discussion that in certain police jurisdictions they were talking about the arming of unmanned aerial vehicles to assist in law enforcement. now, maybe that's something that's worthwhile to consider but i can't help but feel that a step take than far is something that that body should consider. so while i appreciate the subcommittee chairman's concern about legislating on an
9:35 pm
appropriations bill, we're in new territory. we're in uncharted territory. this amendment is a first aid maneuver. it is to place a bandage, if you will, on a growing problem to see if we can't stop and have the discussion before the secretary spends money authorizing the use of armed unmanned aerial vehicles. no one disputes in war zones, in battle space, the use of an unmanned aerial vehicle is incredibly useful. no one argues the utility of these aircraft, these unmanned aircraft in that situation. all i would say is, before we allow that to be occurring in our back yards, on our highways and byways, we need to consider the effects of that. are we in fact ensuring the constitutional rights of people who not just are being surveil burden may be being crod -- controlled by the armaments
9:36 pm
present in these weaponized vehicles. my amendment would prevent the secretary of transportation the head of the f.a.a. pr approving any application to use an unmanned aircraft in the united states air space for the purpose of arming or using that aircraft as with weapon. it doesn't affect surveillance, nor does it affect drones outside u.s. air space. this amendment is preemptive as to my no, ma'am no applications have been filed to use armed dropes in u.s. air space but i believe it's necessary as there has been some discussion about the ability to arm unmanned aerial seek vehicles. i personally believe this was a road down which we should not travel. it is an element of sacrificing safety for security and ultimately achieving neither objective. i think this was an amendment that would be well advised by this body to consider this evening.
9:37 pm
i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of it if it is allowed to stand and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i continue on my reservation, i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i thank the gentleman, for consistency we have to pursue the point of order but this issue has been brought to my attention, i've expressed concerns myself as to how information is used. certainly we want to make sure we're very, very careful as far as privacy issues in this country. the way that these things may be used for purposes that no one quite understands or intended to have happen. so while i have -- i share your concerns, because for
9:38 pm
consistency reasons here, i must insist on my point of order. i don't know if the gentleman has any comments, i would yield to you or if you wanted to -- mr. olver: i will be very brief. i serve on the homeland security subcommittee of appropriations and i don't think that the homeland security authorizers have -- well, i don't know that they have done anything along these lines and that's where it really ought to be dealt with. i would think. so i will agree with what you're doing. mr. chairman. mr. burgess: would the gentleman yield? mr. latham: i'm happy to yield to the gentleman. mr. burgess: we were all happy when we re-authorized the f.a.a., it hadn't been done in some 26 attempts, we got i.o.u.'s and extensions. but then here was the simple
9:39 pm
language allowing for unmanned vehicles in national air space. none of us thought that was a problem. but our constituents are bringing it back to us, they're concerned about privacy, about federal agencies surveiling number activities of commerce in which people may be engaged. then we've gone one step further. if these drones are weaponized, if you've been surveilled unfairly you can go to court and perhaps seek a remedy. but if a bullet is fired from one of these platforms, you don't have any remedy if you're the recipient of that bullet. all i'm asking is that we take all due care and caution and exercise all due care and caution, we are entering a prave new world here and it is incumbent upon every one of us to be certain we do so with all care and caution before we proceed. i appreciate the gentleman allowing me to express my thoughts on this amendment. i wish it could stand, i wish we could vote on it this evening. i understand for consistency why he is insisting on his
9:40 pm
point of order but we are going to have to revisit this, h.r. 5950, stand-alone legislation that would prohibit this activity. i encourage members of congress to look into co-sponsoring it. i yield back. mr. latham: regaining my time, let me say in the authorization, the f.a.a., it only had, their specific role was air traffic concerns that they may have, safety concerns with collisions with other aircraft. i agree with the gentleman, it should probably be homeland security issue, i also serve on homeland security on appropriations, it has not been brought up in that. but i do share your concerns but unfortunately, i must insist on my point of order. i thank the gentleman and i yield back. the chair: will the gentleman state his point of order.
9:41 pm
mr. latham: i make a point of order against the amendment because it proposes to change existing law and proposes a law change in an appropriations. the raul states in pertinent part an amendment shall not be in order if changing existing law. it requires a new determination and i ask for a ruling of the chair. the chair: does any member wish to be heard on the point of order? if not, the chair will rule. the chair finds that this amendment includes language requiring a new determination regarding the end use of certain aircraft systems and their components. the amendment therefore constitutes legislation in violation of clause 2 of rule 21. the point of order is sustained and the amendment is not in order. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek
9:42 pm
recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 7 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. turner of ohio. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. turner: mr. chairman, we must ensure that the men and women who bravely serve our country have access to affordable housing. my amendment seeks to make sure that conflicting government regulations do not pose an impediment to achieving this important goal. currently, the v.a. requires a veteran's preference for housing built on v.a. property. however, h.u.d. requires that h.u.d. assisted projects contain no preferences. these conflicting rules and regulations make it nearly impossible to help low-income senior veterans access affordable housing on v.a. property with h.u.d. assistance. my amendment prohibits h.u.d. from using funds to enforce the
9:43 pm
restriction against a veteran's premps for housing projects built on a v.a. campus or use a v.a. enhanced use lease. the language is identical to an amendment i offered which the house approved twice and was included in the fiscal year 2010 consolidated appropriations act. as a result, in my home state of, st. mary is building housing for senior veterans on the campus of the dayton v.a. it will help provide veterans close access to the service they need. this can be a model to be used across the cupry to help homeless veterans provide low income housing for veterans. i urge all my colleagues to support this important amendment and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i would like to lend my support for this
9:44 pm
amendment as something that the clarification needs to be done, the rules need to work for veterans for these processes, has been one of the hangups for veterans being able to get into assisted living or houses and any backlog that there's been has been basically a bureaucratic backlog rather than a funding issue in the past. so it's a good amendment and i would urge its passage. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: briefly, i would like to congratulate the gentleman from ohio for being watchful of this sort of thing. it's the sort of thing that seems it ought tore very, very logical and i supported it in the past and as he already referenced, so happy to see it's working in your community. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back.
9:45 pm
the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from ohio. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? >> good evening. i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: will the gentleman kindly send his amendment to the desk? mr. garrett: sure. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. garrett of new jersey. at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following, section, none of the funds made available in this act
9:46 pm
shall be used to promulgate issue, establish, implement, administer, finalize or enforce the proposed rule issued by the secretary of housing and urban development and published in the federal register on september 16, 2011, 76-fr-70921 relating to implementation of the fair housing act's discriminatory effects standard. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. garrett: i thank the chair. mr. chair, rise today to offer an amendment that should bring certainty to mortgage and insurance companies as well. my amendment would undo harmful economic actions taken by this administration if carried out -- administration. earlier this year the department of housing and urban development proposed a rule to establish regulatory standards regarding the use of legal theory known as disparate impact. disparate impact liability allows for plaintiffs and government agencies to bring a suit charging discriminatory practices based solely on
9:47 pm
statistics. now, if statistics indicate, for instance, that a disparity exists between the number of loans made in a specific area to a certain preferred minority class versus the number of preferred minorities that live in that area, a lendser would be charged with discriminatory practices, even if there was no intent whatsoever. now, we all agree that discrimination is terrible and that when there is intent, we must prosecute to the fullest extent of the law. but under the example i laid out, the lender could even have a specific anti-discriminatory practice in his company in place but still be found liable under this legal theory. you see, accurate list identification and classification is essential to lending and insurance business. but this h.u.d. rule ignores that. risk-based lending and insurance underwriting and pricing that unintentionally results in a statistically disparate outcome, that is not discrimination. the proposed h.u.d. rule would create a presumption of
9:48 pm
discriminatory disparate impact that could basically undermine the basic purposes of risk-based pricing, which ensures that persons with different risk characteristics have to make payments commence rat with that risk. so -- commensurate with that risk. state law already prohibits insurers from recording race, for example, but this h.u.d. rule considers race considerations would be impossible then under state law. looking specifically at homeowners insurance, commonly considered factors are what? including an african's plane history, construction material, the presence or absence of a security system and the distance from a fire house. they all could be barred if they were found to result in creating a statistical disparity for a class based on race, ethnicity or gender. see, all 50 states have anti- discrimination provisions in their housing and insurance regulations already. and there is no claim that these regulations have been insufficient.
9:49 pm
so the process that h.u.d. proposes for disparate impact rule is therefore unworkable and economically impracticable. the process h.u.d. proposes for depending against a charge of unlawful discrimination based upon disparate impact would then require to provide a ridiculously high standard that the challenge practice is necessary to do to its very survival and that the business would basically collapse if they didn't do it. see, the process h.u.d. proposes would find the defendant company liable if a court could find another practice that is simply less discriminatory. not instead a reasonable economical, practical, workable, state-authorized or known practice. all they have to come up with is another process. so extending disparate impact analysis to a neutral practice exceeds h.u.d.'s authority under the f.h.a. and it is contrary to law. in extending disparate impact analysis to neutral practices therefore is arbitrary and it is
9:50 pm
capricious. therefore the application of this h.u.d. rule on the insurance industry should be precluded and it should be precluded also because of ferguson. recognizing the disparate impact analysis under the f.h.a. exceeds h.u.d.'s authority under the f.h.a. and therefore is contrary to law. the supreme court was recently agreed to hear a challenge on this, i think it was just last year. unfortunately you may know that that case was withdrawn. why? because of pressure from this administration. the administration rightly i believe was concerned that the court would strike down the whole theory as being unconstitutional. now recently a new case had been submitted to the supreme court for consideration on the very same issue. i hope that that court takes that case up soon. the justice department knows it has a weak case. and i do not believe that this administration should try to frontrun the supreme court in an attempt to push it through this failed legal theory. my amendment would prohibit h.u.d. from finalizing this rule that harms credible availability
9:51 pm
and job creation. it is supported by the mortgage bankers association, the national association of mutual insurance companies, along with a couple other institutions as well. the american insurance association and the property casualty insurance association of america. and with that, mr. chairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. garrett: i yield back. the chair: does any member seek time in opposition? the gentleman from massachusetts is recognized. mr. olver: mr. chairman, i claim time in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: the issue seems here to be -- i don't know this very well. the issue seems to be that there
9:52 pm
have been cases where, where discrimination has occurred and it's been adjudicated as having occurred when there was no intent to do so in the first place. in a recent h.u.d. action, this impact was used to protect the rights of women who were evicted because they were victims of domestic violence. there was no intent to discriminate against the victims of the domestic violence, but that's what it was that had been adjudicated in this particular case. cases of this sort have been brought before 11 i think of the 13 appeals courts at this point and the rule which h.u.d. has put forward, the so-called
9:53 pm
disparate impact rule, is -- comes out of their understanding of the cases before the appeals courts where discrimination was determined legally in the appeals courts to have occurred. so the idea that the gentleman is putting forward of prohibiting the finalization of the disparate impact rule, which rises out of these cases, seems to me to be exactly the opposite thing that should be done. if we had those appeals court, unless you get to a point where the appeal court gets to a higher court, which i guess the higher court is the supreme court of the united states, and they overturn the positions that
9:54 pm
have been taken by the several appeals courts in rather similar cases, that then h.u.d. is doing exactly what they need to do. so i must rise in opposition to this. mr. garrett: would the gentleman yield? mr. olver: all of the people in the authorizing side of this are saying, at least on my side of the authorization process, which means the ranking member of the authorization -- authorizing committee here, is opposed to this amendment. mr. frank and the chair of the housing subcommittee, which, there, the ranking member of the housing subcommittee there, also opposes i think for roughly the reason that i have articulated
9:55 pm
here. so, the gentleman is trying to stop the process -- mr. garrett: will the gentleman yield on that? mr. olver: yes. mr. garrett: that's just my point. i'm not trying to stop any process. what i'm trying to do is prevent this administration from doing an end run on the process. you set up the record almost completely straight. there were court cases on this. it was going to the supreme court, there was about to be heard in the -- go to the supreme court and heard in the supreme court and then this administration put pressure on the city that was involved in it to stop it. and they withdrew the case. we would have had the decision by the supreme court in that matter but the administration basically said no but a they -- because they wanted to go ahead with their actions here without interference of the supreme court. fortunately, though, there is now another case that's been filed and it's from my home state of new jersey. this will give us all exactly
9:56 pm
what we need. just what you were saying. lower court, now it's being filed and the appeal is up to the supreme court. mr. olver: we have no idea -- reclaiming my time. no idea -- it is my time, i think. mr. garrett: yes. mr. olver: we have no idea whether the supreme court will take this case. in the meantime, if they do it, we can't assume that, then the actions of the -- of h.u.d. are proper in reaching an impact rule here, a disparate impact rule thatted a mere -- adheres to the findings in the -- that adheres to the findings in the several appeals courts. my staff tells me it is 11 of the appeals courts have reached similar decisions which are adhered to by the h.u.d. impact
9:57 pm
rule. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: let me just stand up in support of the amendment. i think it's a good amendment. insurance companies are not able to determine risk and that oftentimes means much greater costs. i think it's a good amendment. going forward. and i would yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from new jersey. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from louisiana seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report
9:58 pm
the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. cassidy of louisiana. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available -- made available in this act may be used by the secretary of transportation to make any transfer under the last proviso under the heading, department of transportation, office of the secretary, payments to air carriers. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. ms. castor: -- mr. cassidy: earlier this year the house and senate agreed upon a an n.f.a. authorization. there was dispute over the essential air service program which provides federal subsidies for airlines which provide flights to rural or otherwise remote airports. while the work done by chairman mica and his colleagues add several important reforms to the program, a number of issues have
9:59 pm
since surfaced. tonight i'm offering an amendment hope itfully resolve one of those. as currently written, the bill funds the essential air service program through $114 million appropriation from the airways trust fund and via what are called overflight fees which are charged by the f.a.a. to foreign aircraft using american air space and navigation assets. in 2011 as a result of an annual increase of 17% to the overflight fee, the department of transportation estimate is that the fee would bring in around $69 million in revenue for fiscal year 2013. which when compared -- paired with the trust fund would provide all the money needed to operate the e.a.f.'s program. d.o.t. however was wrong about their original $69 million projection. according to the president's budget and the report language in this bill, the projected revenues from the overflight fees are actually $100 million.
10:00 pm
that means that when you combine the $114 million appropriated in this bill, plus the $100 million in revenues from the overflight fees, e.a.f.'s program has $214 million. you could ask, is this adequate to fund the program? it certainly should be. in fiscal year 2011, before the plan began to start scaling back the program, expenditures were around $195 million. put differently, as we've scaled back the program, we've actually increased funding by about $19 million. only in washington would that be a scale. . we have increased funding by $19 million. only in washington would that be a scale. i shouldn't laugh. but that's not the only source of funding that the bill provides. it also allows the secretary of transportation, at his discretion to provide more funds in case the $214 million in
10:01 pm
revenue doesn't cover all obligations. how is this possible? through the authorizing language tacked onto the end of e.a.s. section on page 7, quote, provided further, if the funds under this heading are in sufficient to meet the program in the current fiscal year, the secretary shall transfer such funds as may be necessary to carry out the air service program from my available amounts appropriated to or directly administered by the office of such fiscal year. such sums as may be necessary to carry out the essential air service program. this is a blanching check for the secretary to redirect other funds to e.a.s. if they overrun their $214 million. i have introduced this amendment to enforce the fiscal discipline that proponents perceive.
10:02 pm
it forces the program to live within its means. my amendment null files the secretary's authorizing language from the bill and allows the f.a.a. to spend the money appropriated through the airways trust fund and the overflight fees. some may oppose this and say the section doesn't deal with new spending or funding. however, this per traits the use it or lose it mentality. it should be a principle that agencies ask for and only receive the funds they need for the programs and any unnecessary overpaid funds be returned unspent to the taxpayers. empowering the secretary to use unspent money on more e.a.s. flights is a step in the wrong direction. there will be no use for f.a.a. to cut back on unnecessary flights if too much is spent.
10:03 pm
any gaps can be filled in by the secretary at his discretion without congressional last night. i voted for the mcclintock to phase the program out but i respect the decision of the house and the members voted to keep it in place. the program is going to stay and my amendment doesn't change that. just because someone voted not to eliminate the program, you you could vote for limits. please keep it from going any higher and preserve the congressional power of the purse and i yield back. mr. latham: we would be pleased to accept the amendment. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: mr. chairman, i'm happy to congratulate the
10:04 pm
gentleman from louisiana -- am i correct? congratulate the gentleman for a solution, but i have to admit that i cannot identify what the problem is that this solution solves. this language that you are excluding has been in the legislation for years before i think i was on the -- in the earliest time that i was in the ranking membership on the transportation committee, and that, of course was several years before i chaired the transportation subcommittee. and i think it has been in the language all that time, never come up. so there has been no problem that we solve where it has never been used. that flexibility has never been used to transfer money from
10:05 pm
someplace in order to put money into the e.a.s. program. so yes, you have the solution, but i don't know what the problem is. mr. cassidy: it has not resulted in a problem but a loophole that has revaded the congressional power of the purse. you're right, it wld not be an issue. without that kind -- we are reclaiming our power. mr. olver: in any case, i don't object to the amendment. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from louisiana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio seek recognition? mr. chabot: i have an amendment
10:06 pm
at the desk. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. chabot of ohio, at the end of the bill before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used to design, construct or operate a fixed guideway project located in cincinnati, ohio. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. chabot: this nation cannot continue spending money it doesn't have. it's imperative that congress and the borrow and spend mentality that created our debt and put our nation on a sustainable path. now we need to be pragmatic in our approach ensuring every dollar ensures to improve the flow of congress and creates american jobs. my amendment is about priorities. the city of cincinnati has been in the planning process of constructing a street car for years now. the primary funding for this
10:07 pm
project came in the form of an urban circulated grant in the amount of $25 million. earlier this year, city of cincinnati officials came to my office looking for even more funds for the cincinnati streetcar project. the total cost is expected to be over $120 million for a four-mile loop connecting two cincinnati neighborhoods with no impact on traffic congestion. the cincinnati streetcar is a luxury project that our nation and our region cannot afford. imprudent and spending of taxpayer dollars on designationary projects must stop. taxpayers have been footing the bill much like the bridge to nowhere, this streetcar to no where is another instance of
10:08 pm
wasteful government spending. my amendment says no more, no more funding for this streetcar in my own district. there are a number of other infrastructure projects are of high priority and more worthy of infrastructure investment. in particular, there are two ready-to-begin projects that would have an impact on cincinnati's economy and create jobs completing the bridge and completing i-71 martin luther king highway. the bridge serves as a major thorough fair and also for the entire region at large. this bridge rests on one of the busiest freight routes in north america and estimated to carry 4% of the nation's gross domestic product annually. the federal highway
10:09 pm
transportation has declared the bridge functionally obsolete indicating the current state of the bridge does not meet today's standards. this bridge carries 170,000 vehicles a day which is more than the 80,000 it was designed to carry. replacing this bridge would save $748 million, savings that would grow in real dollars to $1.3 billion by 2030. the other worthy project, the martin luther king interchange has been on the minds of businesses and citizens so much that stakeholders have their own money in this plan. unlike the streetcar to no where, the completion would have a direct impact on cincinnati's most direct hubs. the interchange would free up congestion around university of cincinnati, children's hospital
10:10 pm
and uptown region of cincinnati. this proposed interchange would directly impact 60,000 people and would allow far greater access generating 200-plus jobs. we need to focus our limited resources on innovation that will deliver results. we must make responsible choices and invest projects on their merits and nothing else. we owe it to the american people to invest in those projects that will produce real results, keep us competitive and most importantly, create american jobs. i yield back. i the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. anyone rise in opposition to the amendment? the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from ohio. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
10:11 pm
in the opinion of thehair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. conaway: move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. conaway: i rise today to share my concerns over the federal motor carrier safety agencies on exception to the requirements for drivers. under the administration's regulations, specialty-trained drivers used to service oil wells do not have to count waiting time for their hours of service limit. the new guidelines provides that drivers of support vehicles such as those used to transport materials and supplies used directly in the delivery of oil and gas do not qualify. the administration issued these guidance without making comment
10:12 pm
and requested comments after the fact. support drivers germly work under the exact same drivers as drivers of sperblely constructed vehicles including the same periods while their vehicles are in use at the well site. many drivers operate specialty vehicles one day and other support vehicles the next. it creates a different standard for the exact same drivers. the drivers' waiting time counts towards his or her hours of service limit but when operating a sperblely constructed vehicle, that idle time doesn't count. this will lead to confusion to drivers who will now need to juggle competing rules for drivers depending on the vehicles they are driving. in addition, while not applying the waiting time to drivers on support vehicles means it will require more trucks and drivers to be dispatched while others are out of service increasing
10:13 pm
truck traffic. many of our rural roads particularly in the areas such as the mar smp arch lmp es are struggling under heavy truck traffic. it will not enhance safety no matter how rested the drivers might be. i have dealt with this federal motor carrier safety administration in 2006. i thought we came to an understanding on safety protocols. the agency's new interpretation undoes this compromise. it is important for the administration to document while it is pursuing this new interpretation that it is using to support this change. i believe that at a minimum the agency should not put this guidance into effect until the public has had a chance to comment and for the agency to consider those comments. the federal motor carrier safety administration should not interpret until it provides complete justification for the
10:14 pm
changes that it is seeking to make. mr. chairman, i call this regulatory overreach to the attention of the requisite committee so while they are doing oversight, they can review this interpretation and add their influence to undoing this overreach and with that, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does oklahoma seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. lankford of oklahoma, at the end of the bill before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available for this act may be used for the salary of any officer or employee of the federal highway administration to implement, administer or enforce the migratory bird
10:15 pm
treaty act of january 10, 2001 with respect to or to determine any action of the administration to have a significant impact under section 102-c of the national environmental policy act of 1969, 42 u.s.c. 4332-c based on the effect of sucks action on the clips swallow or bird swallow as listed in section 10.13-c-1 code of federal regulations. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. . mr. lankford: this is a common migratory bird. travel back and forth, move around, and they love to nest around manmade objects. the law states now currently that you can't touch a bridge or any kind of construction if that barn swallow or cliff swaff --
10:16 pm
cliff swallow is present there. so during the prime construction time, from early june through september, you can't do construction on many bridges or construction companies have to hire people to go out and stand around the construction site to wave off the birds, to keep them from nesting there, to be able to fight this off during the earliest part of the season. there are numerous cases of this. and in my own state in oklahoma, let me give you one example of that. in ellis county, state highway bridge -- off state highway 46, -- they were painting a bridge, just painting it, no construction, no anything else. the total project was estimated to cost $185,000. because in the process of going out to check and verify they found a barn swallow there, they had to halt that until after september to come back and paint it. it increased the price of the project $27,000, to set up, realize it's there, tear down, come back and do it all over again. a 15% increase for a painting
10:17 pm
job. now, i say this to say, this is not an issue that's going to shape the future of america. but this is one of those issues that does increase the cost of construction over a bird that is not endangered, that is not threatened, that is incredibly common. should we honor wildlife? absolutely. but this dramatically drives up the cost and decreases the amount of construction that we can do in america during prime construction season and i would just suggest that we take just these two species and set them out just for the transportation purposes here. with that i yield back. the chair: -- >> the gentleman would yield? i understand the gentleman's concerned and i am prepared to accept the amendment. mr. latham: i yield back to the gentleman. mr. lankford: thank you. with that i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: this is a peculiar
10:18 pm
amendment, it seems to me. the migratory -- the enforcement of the migratory bird law, the migratory bird treaty act, is administered by the u.s. fish and wildlife service and the department of interior and so it's not -- there's no enforcement power in the department of transportation. are there agreements by which the d.o.t. and the department of the interior are bound? mr. lankford: would the gentleman yield? mr. olver: yes. mr. lankford: in 2001 the president did executive order 13586. that executive order extended that out to all agencies dealing with the migratory bird treaty act. so it does extend this out to the department of transportation
10:19 pm
as well as all other agencies. if they're going to prosecute obviously it's going to be the department of justice and the rules are going to be promulgated out of fish and wildlife but all agencies are affected by it based on the executive order from 2001. so when you try and take this for the transportation only, because it is such an issue for much of the transportation across the entire country. mr. olver: this is an executive order promulgated by president clinton or by president bush? mr. lankford: president clinton at the very end, in january -- early january, 2001. january 10, actually. mr. olver: well, i don't know how dish don't know how this amendment is going to solve the problem that you have, but -- exactly, but the chairman has agreed to adopt it so i will
10:20 pm
state an objection because i really don't understand how this is going to solve your problem. but i will not go beyond that. mr. lankford: i thank the gentleman. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from oklahoma. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. >> mr. chairman. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i would like unanimous consent to ask for a call of the yeas and nays on that. the chair: is the gentleman asking for a recorded vote? mr. olver: a record vote, yes. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from oklahoma will be postponed.
10:21 pm
for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will dessnailt the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 9 printed in the congressional record offered by mr. denham of california. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. denham: thank you, mr. speaker. very simple amendment, it basically says at the end of this bill, none of the funds may be used for high speed rail in california. california has a project that was supposed to cost $33 billion . the voters in california voted for a bond of $9.9 billion. the federal government was supposed to come up with $10 billion and a private company was supposed to come up with $10 billion. the problem is there is no private investor for the $10 billion. the federal government is broke with $16 trillion of debt and can't come up with $10 billion. and the state of california can no longer float the bonds because the credit rating is so bad. to compound the matters, it's no longer a $33 billion project. it ballooned to $68 billion.
10:22 pm
and then on up to $98 billion. and when talking to secretary lahood, he said there's no end in sight, that this is a project that could continue to change as we move forward. in fact, that's what we're actually seeing in california, an initiative that bounces back and forth, $10 billion here, $10 billion there. so again this amendment is very simple. it just says, none of these funds can be used for high speed rail in california. we've got highways that are falling apart, bridges that are falling apart. we need to ensure that our gas tax dollars get used for their intended purpose of actually improving our roads and highways. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. olver: i claim the time in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: mr. chairman, the --
10:23 pm
there are no funds made available in this act for high speed rail. none. and so since this is a one-year bill, i don't think this amendment does very much. the gentleman from california has a problem with a process that has been going on now for at least a decade in the development of high speed rail and the people of california have spoken on this by referendum. they have passed a bond bill by referendum, i think bond bills usually take an extraordinary vote, 2/3 vote, or something like that, am i correct?
10:24 pm
would the gentleman from california confirm that it was a 2/3 vote by which the referendum was passed? mr. denham: sir, you are correct. now the voters are 2/3 against the bill by several different polls. mr. olver: well, that can be established if they actually have a referendum that repeals what they have done. but there has been, as we know, california's received about $4 billion of moneys from the federal government from earlier funds in earlier bills which have already been obligated and -- or are about to be obligated. and this -- actions on this bill would not have anything to do with the obligation of those funds, would not have -- would not be in effect at any time that could affect the obligation of those funds.
10:25 pm
because they have to be obligated before the end of this fiscal year, where this bill is certainly not going to be in place before the end of the fiscal year. but there are processes also going on. unfortunately we have, at the moment, no one here who is really knowledgeable precisely about the -- what it is that's going on in california. but let me just comment here that the proposal for the starting use of these funds has been controversial. there are people who say, well, why are we building this in the central valley of california? because the first intended construction of the project has been in the bakersfield to fresno corridor and then if it
10:26 pm
is extended it is then likely to be extended to the modesto metropolitan area or the stockton and/or -- i think it is at mow deftow that there is a -- modesto that there is something, one link of it going to stockton and to sacramento and the other going to san jose and san francisco. and in either case, in either case the -- you have to start somewhere. when we started to build the interstate -- the interstate highway system we didn't start in the center of the cities, which would have been very complicated. we started in building those legs of the interstate highway system where it was easy to build them.
10:27 pm
and that is possible, and the right of way i think has already been acquired by the california d.o.t. to build the high speed rail system in that first corridor, in the bakersfield-fresno and maybe on to modesto, as i have understood the developments in the last few weeks. so, the gentleman's problem is -- it seems to me, with what's already been agreed to by california and what has already -- what is already going forward, money that has some of them been obligated and in place to go and some of them yet to be obligated, but -- about to be obligated, and --
10:28 pm
mr. denham: would the gentleman yield? mr. olver: i will. mr. denham: no dispute here on whether or not this bill has any mention of high speed rail. i would agree. there is no mention of it. and i won't even dispute here tonight whether the president wants to spend more on high speed rail or whether the governor wants to spend more money on high speed rail. that is a different debate. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. olver: madam chairwoman, i will then claim -- move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: i think i'm doing the correct thing there. and i'll yield again for the continuation of what the gentleman from california is saying. mr. denham: thank you, sir. thank you for yielding. i would agree that the president can come up with more money if he feels that he wants to transfer more stimulus dollars or we may have another vote
10:29 pm
depending on another allocation or appropriation that may want to spend money on high speed rail. this amendment says that our gas tax dollars will go back to california to be used for highways and roads. that's all this amendment does. that's all i intend to do. is to make sure that the governor of california does not take money out of the block grant from the federal government that goes into the funds to utilize it for other things such as high speed rail. the governor has to use the money where this federal government intended to be used. very simple. mr. olver: the language of the amendment -- reclaiming my time -- the language of the amendment as i have it before me says none of the funds made available by this act may be used for high speed rail in the state of california or for the california high speed rail authority. mr. denham: correct. mr. olver: how does that
10:30 pm
guarantee that california's gas tax moneys will not be used for high speed rail? mr. denham: if in this bill, as congress we stipulate that none of the funds can be used for high speed rail, then none of the funds can be used for high speed rail. it's a very simple mandate for the governor. use the money where it was intended to be used but not high speed rail. the language is very simple. that's why we wrote it as a one-sentence, none of the funds may be used for high speed rail. .
10:31 pm
mr. olver: madam chairman -- mr. latham: is it your impression is they can't take highway trust fund money and put it in the high-speed rail and take transit dollars and put it into high-speed rail. it would be my understanding, since there is no money in the bill for high-speed rail that he is talking about other parts of money that would go to california and trying to wall that off from being used. that's my understanding. maybe the gentleman has a different interpretation. mr. olver: at this point, i really don't know if your understanding is anywhere close to mine. i think this is a -- an
10:32 pm
amendment deserving opposition. and so i'm opposing the amendment. i think this amendment should not be adopted and you can do as you wish. the chair: does the the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i have. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. >> i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed.
10:33 pm
for what purpose does the gentleman from louisiana seek recognition? mr. landry: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. landry of louisiana. at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following, section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used to promulgate any regulations that would mandate global positioning system tracking, onboard recording devices or event data devices. the chair: does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i reserve a point of order on the gentleman's amendment. the chair: a point of order is reserved. the gentleman from louisiana is recognized for five minutes. mr. landry: i'm honored to be
10:34 pm
joined by my distinguished colleague, mr. rahall, on this amendment. it prohibits any funds under this act to be used to implement any administrative -- administration mandate for global positioning systems, electronic onboard devices on passenger and commercial vehicles. the department of transportation has become obsessed with electric electronically moving vehicles. it would require every car have a device which is very similar to an airplane's black box. additionally, they are working on another mandate which would require that trucks carry an electronic onboard recorder. even the name sounds scary. they would record and transmit data when the truck is in use.
10:35 pm
this regulation is so costly that even president obama has singled it out as a regulation which needs more studying. he did so because it estimated that the mandate will cost the trucking industry at least $1 billion to implement. madam chairman, the truckers in my district cannot afford this cost. some companies like these devices and that's grite. they can put them in their trucks voluntarily. however like a few companies like the devices, we shouldn't mandate on them on everyone. and i reserve. the chair: the gentleman may not reserve. mr. landry: i yield. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from iowa seek recognition? mr. latham: i withdraw my reservation. i appreciate the gentleman's concern on this amendment.
10:36 pm
i think it's -- timing is maybe unfortunate. this is a major issue in the re-authorization bill but hopefully is going to be filed tonight and this issue will be dealt with. it truly is an authorizing issue that should not be on this bill. and so while i may have share sore concerns with the j -- share some concerns with the gentleman, i don't think it's appropriate on this bill especially at this moment when the highway bill is being filed and hopefully this issue will be resolved in that bill. so with that, i'm going to have to with some reservation urge a no vote on this amendment, unfortunately. the chair: for what purpose does
10:37 pm
the gentleman from massachusetts rise? mr. olver: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. olver: i think what the chairman has said is probably about as good as one can get. what we have now is an amended version of the proposal. and my understanding is that the major long-distance trucking companies are against this language. those safety advocates are against this language, but there are other trucking interests that favor this language, who are happy with this language. so you have a real controversy among people who if the long-distance truckers and
10:38 pm
safety advocates, i would think that is something we should worry about, but as the chairman has said, this is an issue that really ought to be on -- in the hands of thozzers and worked out by the -- authorization legislation. the limitation on funds is effective in any case only for this one-year appropriation bill. mr. landry: would the gentleman yield? i have heard from some of my colleagues and outside groups who would argue this is not the time to have this debate. if not now, when? when will we publicly debate the issue? we are waiting on a conference
10:39 pm
report not knowing what's in it. i would argue this is the time for us to have that debate and to be clear. and just because a few big companies in this country want these types of devices, then what about the small business owners who we all, both sides of the aisle, continually come to this m inch c say they support our actions -- opposing this amendment would say to the big corporations, i'm with you and say to the little guys, i'm not? mr. olver: reclaiming my time. maybe the gentleman understands and i do not, who is in favor of promulgating regulations -- who is about to promulgate regulations in this area of mandating global positioning systems, electric tronic --
10:40 pm
electronic onboard devices? where is the problem here? mr. landry: department of transportation, is my understanding. mr. olver: are they in the businessf writing rules requiring this? my competent staff tells me that we have been requiring this in the mexican trucking controversy over the past few years. well, we have been fighting over that one back and forth for years and years now and i can't remember there was that sort of thing there. i don't remember it having come up before at any point.
10:41 pm
i yield back the time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from louisiana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. mr. olver: i ask for a recorded vote on this issue. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from louisiana will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from louisiana seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. scalise of louisiana, at the
10:42 pm
end of the bill before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available under this act may be used to implement any rule or regulation that expressly prohibits an owner or landlord of housing from using a criminal conviction to deny housing to an applicant for such housing. the chair: the gentleman from louisiana is recognized for five minutes. mr. scalise: thank you, madam chair and this amendment is limited and straightforward to deal with a problem that we started getting calls about from realtors in my district as well as property owners who own apartment units, other types of housing that are rented out. the department of housing and urban development has recently come out with a rule called the diss par ate impact rule and it's not a final rule that has been issued yet and we are
10:43 pm
trying to make a narrow clarification that would allow property owners to be able to check and make sure that if somebody has a criminal conviction, that that person could be prevented from moving into an apartment complex, for example, where you've got single mothers with young children. every single day in this country, property owners use background checks to check on criminal records of people who are applying for housing. this has nothing to do with violations of fair housing act. it's just a basic common practice that property owners use every day to make sure that someone who is looking to move into housing does president have a criminal record. -- doesn't have a criminal record. some property owners can look at that, but many property owners do look at whether or not someone has a criminal conviction in determining
10:44 pm
whether or not they will rent them housing and it's not only to protect the property owner who has hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions of dollars invested in that property but also to protect the other residents who are renting property. this new rule that has come out, jeopardizes the ability for those property owners to check and make sure that someone doesn't have a criminal conviction on their record. what this amendment would do is ensure that if the department of housing and urban development goes forward with this rule, that the rule won't prevent somebody from using a tool that has been in the hands of property owners for generations, just to make sure that somebody doesn't have a criminal conviction when they are moving into a housing unit that they own. again, using an example of a sex offender. sex offenders in most states, my
10:45 pm
state, there are strict requirements what someone has to comply with. they have to register and do a lot of other things. if someone doesn't comply with that law and there are cases of people that don't comply. you don't know if you are renting property to someone if they are a registered sex offender, but if you do the background chk and see they have the criminal conviction on their record, you can say you are not coming into my complex and jeopardizing the lives of children, you are going to be denied and this new rule jeopardizes their ability to carry out a basic enforcement mechanism that property owners use every day to protect their property. we want to make sure as it relates to criminal convictions that property owners can continue to look at that and make sure that that is something that they aren't going to be
10:46 pm
found in violation of law if they use that mechanism. simple amendment and i urge adoption and yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from louisiana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. . . for what purpose does the gentlewoman from washington seek recognition? >> madam chairwoman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mrs. herrera butler of washington. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following, section, none of the funds made available in this act may be used to build flood protection walls for interstate 5 between milepost 72-82 in lieu
10:47 pm
which is county, washington. the chair: the gentlewoman from washington is recognized for five minutes. mr. herrera: thank you, madam speaker -- ms. herrera beutler: thank you, madam speaker. the reason i bring this amendment to the desk is because there are families, there are businesses, moms and dads in lieu which is county, on i-5, that have experienced devastating flooding. in fact, one of my meetings back there i met a wonderful older woman who has lived in that county for decades and she said to me, honey, when it starts to rain outside, i don't -- i get terrified. i don't know if i should put on my valuables in thed aic and i should leave the house and that's because in 2007, madam speaker this county experienced devastating flooding. and every time it rains the residents wonder, is this going to be the next catastrophic flood where i lose my business, i lose my home, and it devastates families. our state legislature and locals
10:48 pm
in the community in lieu which is county have been seeking a basin-wide solution to flood protection. the army corps of engineers has spent decades studying this issue and the time the study is over we need a solution that isn't going to wall off the twin cities in lewis county by erecting an 11-foot or 11-mile levee that businessically turns those cities into a bath tub. and with this amendment i was seeking to prohibit that bath tub effect so to speak. so as to protect the businesses and the families and the commerce that takes place. we can come up with a better solution. however, madam chairman, because this is such an important issue and want to make sure that we do this right, i'm going to withdraw my amendment at this time and actually before i do so , madam speaker, would it be possible to ask a question from the subcommittee chairman? mr. latham: would you yield?
10:49 pm
would the gentleman yield? ms. herrera beutler: i'd be happy to yield. mr. latham: i understand the concerns you have and i would look forward to working with you as we get toward conference to try and address your concerns on this very, very important issue, obviously, for your constituents and would be pleased to be of any kind of assistance we possibly could. i appreciate the gentlewoman. ms. herrera beutler: thank you, mr. chair. with that i withdraw my amendment, madam speaker, and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: without objection, the amendment is withdrawn. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from iowa is recognized. mr. latham: i move to strike the last word.
10:50 pm
the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. latham: i thank the madam chairman. and i believe we're coming to the end here and i just want to make a couple of comments as far as the gentleman from massachusetts, once again this will be his last appropriation bill on the floor, as the ranking member and former chairman of the subcommittee. mr. olver's done an outstanding job over the years. we don't always agree on everything do we, john? but we work very, very well together and i just want to wish you and your wife the best. you are a great partner and someone that i admire very, very much, your intelligence, your ability to look in detail at
10:51 pm
programs and we kid each other or i kid mr. olver a lot about maybe having debates inside his mind sometimes and in committee and -- but he's always extraordinarily thoughtful. and someone that i again that i admire very, very much. madam chairman, we have been through a two-day process here. a lot of amendments. i believe that we're to the point where we can bring this effort to a conclusion and i would again thank mr. olver, thank the staffs, the professional staff, on both sides, on the majority, on the minority side, for doing such an outstanding job and working together. it's very difficult sometimes on these bills. also in my office, doug does
10:52 pm
such a fabulous job working on this bill for me. but just to say thank you to everyone and with that, madam chairwoman, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from -- mr. latham: madam chairwoman, i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the moths is -- the motion is adopted. accordingly the committee rises.
10:53 pm
the speaker pro tempore: madam chair. the chair: mr. speaker, the committee on the -- of the whole house on the state of the union, having had under consideration h.r. 597 , directs me to report that it has come no no resolution thereon. the speaker pro tempore: the chair of the committee of the whole house on the state of the union reports that the committee has had under consideration h.r. 5972 and has come no to -- come to no resolution thereon. for what purpose does the gentleman from louisiana seek recognition? mr. landry: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that i be removed as a co-sponsor of h.r. 1380. the speaker pro tempore: without objection.
10:54 pm
10:55 pm
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california rise? >> thank you, madam speaker. i have a motion at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the motion. the clerk: motion to instruct conferees on h.r. 4348 offered by ms. hahn of california. ms. hahn of california moves that the managers on the part of the house at the conference on the disagreeing votes of the two houses on the senate amendment to the bill h.r. 4348 be instructed to agree to the freight policy provisions in section 1115, section 33002, section 33003 and section 33005 of the senate amendment.
10:56 pm
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 7 of rule 22, the gentlewoman from california, ms. hahn, and the gentleman from california, mr. denham, each will control 30 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from california. ms. hahn: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself as much time as i consume. my motion to instruct the conferees would be in favor of the senate language as it relates to freight and goods movement. it would authorize a national freight plan, national surface transportation and freight policy and port infrastructure development initiative. we've all heard that the conference report is close to being filed and i have also heard that the senate freight provisions are not in the final agreement. i wanted to come to the floor tonight and make one last attempt to ensure that our country has a national freight policy. madam speaker, the port of los angeles is in my backyard and
10:57 pm
when i was on the city council in los angeles, i focused on transporting the goods that arrive in the port to the rest of the nation. when i came to congress almost a year ago, i was surprised that there was not enough attention on our ports and i was surprised if we didn't even have a ports caucus. so i co-founded the bipartisan port caucus with my good friend, ted poe from texas. to educate the rest of our members on the importance of our ports and goods movement, to our nation's economy. so first, for those who don't know what goods movement is, i'd like to talk about why it's crucial for our nation. we're a consumer economy, whether it is a mom and pop store on the corner or a large retailer like target, we don't think twice when we go to these stores to purchase groceries. toys for our children or clothing. when bewe -- when we go to the store, we expect that the milk and the barbie dolls are on the shelf. simply goods movement is transporting products, whether they are made in america or
10:58 pm
imported through our nation's ports, to retail stores. the goods that are transported throughout the country are transported by freight rail, trucks and in some cases waterways. the efficient transportation of these goods is crucial for our economy. we need to invest in all modes of transportation for freight, including roads, rail, grade crossings, to reduce bottlenecks. but, madam speaker, this nation does not focus enough resources on freight policy and goods movement. we don't have a national freight plan to guide us. according to robert fuentes at the brookings institute, the nation has no comprehensive strategy or plan for the maintenance and development of transportation assets represented to international freight movement. the country's freight transportation industry is highly decentralized, with private operators owning almost all of the trucks and rails and the public sector owning the roads, airports and waterway rights.
10:59 pm
and unlike our international peers such as germany, canada, australia, the united states doesn't have a unified strategy that aligns disparate owners and interests around national economic objectives. madam speaker, without a national plan we have bottlenecks transporting our goods. for example, the goods that leave theport of los angeles take -- the port of los angeles take 48 hours to arrive in chicago and take another 30 hours to travel across the city. what does this bottleneck and others like it mean? it means higher costs for consumers, more congestion, more pollution, less jobs. we need to stop this piecemail system and develop a national plan. it's so crucial that we develop this plan now because the amount of freight will increase drastically in the next 20 years. in southern california it's expected to triple. in addition this administration
11:00 pm
wants to double the exports by 2014 and i think we need to have an efficient system to export our products overseas. this will provide opportunities for our small businesses and we need to prepare for that increase. according to the federal highway administration, the u.s. surface transportation network, which includes rail and highway, is reaching or has reached capacity in many areas. the congestion largely stems from the lack of capacity to meet traffic demands and lack of infrastructure. . a u.s. department of transportation report estimates the cost of carrying freight on the highway system adds $25 to $200 an hour -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman will suspend.
11:01 pm
the gentlewoman may proceed. ms. hahn: unexpected delays can increase the cost of transporting goods. because the supply chain is a network of retailers, distributors, storage facilities and suppliers that participate in the sale, delivery and production of a particular product, congestion resulting in unreliable trip times and missed deliveries can have major business implications which adds costs at every length of supply chain. if the transportation function is efficient, manufacturing and retail firms can carry less inventory because they can rely on goods being delivered when and where they are needed. if the transportation is congested and unreliable, a firm must carry more inventory and
11:02 pm
availability of goods is maintained. carrying inventory is not free. not is it a firm's capital tied up, but it must be stored and insured. this model of businesses carrying more inventories costs money to companies and ultimately to the consumer. you know, one of the reasons that i like working on ports and freight policy is because it's a bipartisan issue. it's something we can find middle ground on. for example, bob poole stated that goods movement infrastructure has not gotten enough attention either at the federal level or in the transportation plans of urban areas. metropolitan planning organizations. the larger question before us is what the federal government's direct role should be. he continues, despite my leaning, i agree that
11:03 pm
facilitating free flow of commerce with the world and amongst states is one of the tasks the constitution gives to the federal government. so he says, i'm favorable to the idea of the federal government making strategic investments in critical corridors in the goods' movement system and this involves all the modes for shippers to move cargo. what organizations support a national freight plan? in addition to many transportation and port organizations, a national freight plan is supported by the united states chamber of commerce and the national retail federation. the chamber of commerce recently sent a letter this month to the conference committee stating, the reliable and timely movement of goods is critical to u.s. economic health. and fortunately, the condition and capacity of the transportation system has failed
11:04 pm
to keep up with the growth in trade volumes and freight movement. congestion caused by bottlenext threaten to choke future economic growth. the chamber believes that the senate-passed bill establishes a freight program that would improve regional and national freight movement by targeting investments that would facilitate the movement of freight such as truck-only lanes, improvements to freight. as part of the freight stakeholder coalition, the retailers stated, substantial investment in the nation's freight transportation system must be given a high priority. without the ability to quickly and cost effectively move goods in and out and through the united states, america will not be able to maintain our high standard of living and high
11:05 pm
employment levels. i have letters of support from the american trucking association and the american association of port authorities in support of this motion. and i have in -- many other supporters that if you would like to read those if you like. we also know congestion, truck congestion causes air pollution. south coast air quality management district said diesel emissions are responsible for 71% of the major pollutants in the iege, this means more asthma and cancer. eliminating emissions will improve our nation's health. america's farmers would benefit from a national freight policy. not only do our america's farmers provide food in our grocery stores but feed the world as well. america is the world's bread
11:06 pm
basket and the grain needs to be transported from america's heartland to our ports. it is crucial that we have the infrastructure to transport our goods from california or the midwest to export them. in conclusion, last week, the ports caucus met with the transportation secretary lahood. he said the department was beginning to plan a national freight policy, but that congress needed to prioritize goods movement. this is our chance. the last transportation bill was passed seven years ago. we cannot wait another seven years before we make a national commitment and a priority for a freight policy in this country. i urge my colleagues to vote for my motion. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. denham: i rise to claim the
11:07 pm
republican time on the motion to instruct and yield myself such time as i may consume. this motion to the surface transportation reauthorization to agree to several provisions in the senate bill related to freight policy. the conferees and their staffs have been working around the clock and it is our hope to file an agreement as soon as possible. this agreement is aimed to tackle serious issues to tackle the infrastructure of the united states which is utmost of the future growth of the american economy. as soon as it is filed, i encourming the gentlewoman from california to take note of the freight language that the majority of the conferees chose to include. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from rarity -- the gentleman reserves the balance of his time.
11:08 pm
the gentlewoman from california. ms. hahn: again, i have letters from support from major organizations who felt like the freight policy language was not as good as the senate bill. and you know, just to make clear that the freight policy in the senate bill does not increase the total cost of the bill and by leaving the provisions that i talked about out of the final bill while not reducing the costs of the bill and not reducing the deficit. i just think the senate language really sets forth something that i think we have never done in this country and that is really to prioritize and to understand the importance of moving forward, being competitive in this global economy and establishing a comprehensive freight policy that will put goods movement at a level that i think it should be.
11:09 pm
i yield or i reserve. the chair: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. denham: i'm prepared to close if the gentlelady is prepared to yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized. ms. hahn: i'm ready to close, too. the hour is late. and for those of you watching tonight on c-span it is nearing the final hour of the day. it is past 11:00 p.m., but i really did feel like one of the reasons i did come to congress was to raise the level of importance of our ports, goods movement, cargo, what it meant to this economy, what it means to jobs and i just wanted to give it one last shot that we might instruct the conferees to include what i think is the better language in the final
11:10 pm
transportation bill. thank you. i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman is recognized. mr. denham: i can appreciate the gentlewoman's passion. i see the great ports of california and throughout the nation and to have an overall freight policy and look forward to working with her on this very important issue and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the previous question is ordered. the question is on the motion to instruct. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair --, the noes have it.
11:11 pm
the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. hahn: i ask for the yeas and nays. recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8, rule 20, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house the following personal requests. the clerk: leaves of absence requested for representative
11:12 pm
eddie berne ease johnson for today and the balance of the week. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. denham: i move that the house do now adjourn. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. . the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the house stands adjourned until 10:00 the highway and mass transit programs bill. tomorrow, the house will vote on a congress resolution against attorney general eric holder. this week, they are also expected to vote on the highway
11:13 pm
and mass-transit bill, and measures to prevent student loan interest rates from dublin at the end of the month. we will have live coverage here on c-span when they return at 10:00 a.m. eastern. >> july 7 and 8, book tv and american history tv will explore the heritage and literary -- history of misery's state capital, jefferson city. >> this is probably our most famous -- this is what we like to show to visitors to come in. this is a book about. tubman called "the moses of her people." the special thing about this -- this book was written in 1866. this book -- gary tuchman made her mark on their -- harriet
11:14 pm
tubman made her mark on there. that is the most famous autographs. obviously, she could not read or write, so she left her mark, the sign of the cross. >> waterboard tv on a jefferson city, missouri, july 7 and 8. >> at a campaign stop yesterday, vice president joe biden spoke to a group of united out the workers -- auto workers and argued that mitt romney supported outsourcing jobs when he worked as governor of massachusetts. this campaign rally was 15 minutes. [applause] >> how are you? good to be back here in black hawk country.
11:15 pm
good to be back in waterloo. you are a good friend. i mean that sincerely. the sky -- as we used to say in the senate, excuse a point of personal privilege. tip o'neill said that all politics were local. far be it for me to correct them, but all politics are personal. all politics are personal because they affect personal lives, personal relationships that we have built in this city and in this state. if memory serves me, my first time being here in waterloo was 1974. i was a newly minted united states senator elected in 1972 along with a guy named senator
11:16 pm
dick clark. we were here campaigning for a congressman running for the united states senate. [applause] back then, waterloo was known as the factory city of iowa, if memory serves me correctly. john deere had 16,000 -- 16,000 people working at john deere. packing was still in business. manufacturing companies were going strong. but the farm crisis hit. it hit hard. john deere laid off nearly 10,000 of the folks throughout the decade. chamberlain closed shop. then we got hit by a new word we had not heard up until then -- outsourcing. the dreaded word. outsourcing. i do not know how many closed its eyes -- stood in front of with padlocks on them.
11:17 pm
they had picked out moved, lock, stock, and barrel. machinery, equipment. and they got a tax break for moving it. to mexico or someplace else. it started with small manufacturing like one toy company that relocated 250 jobs. turn to the jobs were relocated to one because they pay one dollar 50 cents an hour. -- $1.50 per hour. they started the race to the bottom. it really gained pace, outsourcing. it became a lot more sophisticated. we started out sourcing sophisticated services. -and stuff. but barack and i got elected -- we were determined to restore america's middle-class, to restore america's heartland and
11:18 pm
strengthen america so that young people, young people raised here and educated here, who have family here, went to college here, could come home and a sink their own routes and fine opportunity here. instead of like in the set -- 1970's, 1980's, 1990's, leaving. we had the best education systems in the country here. here in blackrock county, i have spoken to people. their son and daughter did well. no job for them. nothing for them here. we are determined to turn that around. we went to work. we did it in two ways. first, we vastly increased the markets for agricultural products, not only in countries that were blocking access, but
11:19 pm
in emerging access -- countries. second, we did all we could do to end the practice of outsourcing. we started off by betting on you. literally, not figuratively. betting on you as the most productive workers in the world. america workers are the most productive workers in the world. and we started by trying to change and reward american manufacturers to stay in america or brought their factories back here. outsourcing -- mitt romney says he is of the same mind. this is pretty fascinating. i hope the press listens to this. [laughter] i do not mean they do not listen. [laughter] something's s.a., i wish they did not listen to. -- i say, i wish they would not
11:20 pm
listen to. [laughter] i tell you what, he says he is the same. he says he wants to bring american jobs home. speaking at a factory in cincinnati in february, he said -- i guess it was just last week. he said, his experience as a businessman is what gives him the great understanding of what it takes to bring jobs back to the united states of america. that is his promise. in toledo, at a fence factory, that was in february, he said that outsources had a "enabled to put american businesses out of business and kill american jobs." he went on to say, if he were president, he would and that outsourcing. that is what he tells you. like so many things the governor talks about, there is a huge disconnect between what he says and what he means and what he has done. [applause]
11:21 pm
ladies and gentlemen, do not take my word for it. just last week, a major article in "the washington post." they examine 15 years of sec records that bain capital investments made under mitt romney. during the 15 years he ran the show. here is what they said. during the 15 year period when mitt romney was involved running them, a private equity firm he founded, they owned companies who were pioneers in the practice of shipping workers from the united states to overseas call centers and factories. they were a pioneer. he was a pioneer in the practice. that is what the record shows.
11:22 pm
bain companies were "handmaidens to this outflow of employment." handmaidens to this out " -- out flow of employment. this person who tells us his business experience tells him how to bring jobs come. look -- these were just little out for its -- outfits, 200 jobs. we are talking helping major corporations like microsoft, sun microsystems, dell, to outsource their manufacturing from the united states of america. the ceo of one of the companies that they owned claimed that he would -- "working closely on strategic expansion." strategic expansion in this case means moving jobs from iowa,
11:23 pm
ohio, michigan, pennsylvania to singapore, taiwan, china, south korea. here is the bottom line, folks. these companies made a great deal of money facilitating outsourcing. they made a lot of money, but in the process they devastated, they devastated whole american communities. here in the heartland and back to my home state of delaware. an outfit that tracks the stuff called the mackenzie global institute estimated that, in the last two decades, $18.4 billion in i.t. and $11.4 billion in process services moved overseas. imagine how many families that work -- represents. imagine how many communities that impacted. in the united states of america.
11:24 pm
look, this is totally consistent with mitt romney's economic philosophy. he is not a bad guy. he is a decent man. people who support him are decent people. they just have different values. this guy is a good family man. this guy has a lovely wife. by the way, my guess is that he would trade all the money he had for her fault. -- full health. but they have a different body set in terms of what this country, what makes this country tick. he believes that it makes a lot of sense to do things the way that he did them at bain,. romney supporters continue to believe in this business model, a model they helped pioneer. they believe that it is truly good for the american economy.
11:25 pm
they believe that while the export of jobs can be disruptive for workers and communities, outsourcing has been a positive economic force that has made u.s. companies more nimble and profitable. and of ". i simply ask you, how is that nimble profitable thing working for the general motors and chrysler plants close in my home state of delaware? how is that nimble and profitable thing working for those 8 million americans who are out of work -- there are more than that. just as a consequence of this rough -- recession. look -- profits to not mean a lot of these companies have if you do not have a house. if you have been foreclosed on. they do not mean a lot if you do not have a job.
11:26 pm
they do not mean a lot if he sat at your kitchen table this morning, as some of you probably did, you know your fellows in parts of the country did, having a coffee at the table and saying, who will tell her? who will tom mary she cannot go back to the university? who will say -- will you tell her or will i have to? people hurt. they still hurt. but if you -- but that nimble profitable stuff does not help much. you have to give mitt romney credit. he is a job creator. in singapore, china, india. [applause] he's created jobs overseas. i think he creates jobs. the problem is, they are mostly overseas.
11:27 pm
maybe that is why the president sought and won it -- sanctions against china. remember when china was dumping tires on the american market? the president took action and we won that case. romney attacked the president for "protectionism." the sky talks tough on china? uy talks tough on china? some people say, you are being unfair. that was their job. that was what they were supposed to do. we do not take issue with that. but when he became governor of massachusetts, we saw it was not just his job. it was his economic philosophy. this guy is a true believer. no joke. not a bad guy. this guy is a true believer.
11:28 pm
as governor, his administration, as governor of massachusetts he pioneered outsourcing. he gets to the governor of the state. his administration signed a $170,000 a month contract to pay people abroad to answer the phones to help poor people in massachusetts calling about having lost their jobs -- how they could get food stamps. [jeers] not a joke. not a joke. when massachusetts passed a bill saying you could not outsource contracts overseas, he vetoed that bill. here is the crow irony. an unemployed worker in massachusetts picks up his or her telephone, call the state of massachusetts to ask about the
11:29 pm
unemployment benefits, and ends up talking to somebody in another country that her job was outsourced to. [jeers] truth is stranger than fiction, man. that is what they did. so do not tell me it was just his job at bain. it is part of the economic philosophy he thinks will revive this country. it may not surprise many of you, but under governor romney's tenure, mass. was losing manufacturing jobs twice as fast as the rest of the country. they were the third-worst in the united states of america. his whole career, this good man, mitt romney, has looked at american workers, looked at all of you, looked at all of us as
11:30 pm
part of the problem. american workers are part of the problem. we asked for a decent wage. we ask for benefits. the president and i do not see american workers as part of the problem. we see them as the heart of the solution. the heart of the solution. [applause] folks, that is why one of the first things the president and obama -- president obama and i did over significance opposition and mitt romney are doing we should let detroit go bankrupt -- we rescued the automobile industry. [applause] we rescued the automobile industry because we believe that the most productive workers in the world are american workers. give them a chance and they will out produce. they will out bill.
11:31 pm
they will out manufacturer. they will outperform anyone in the world. [applause] we also believe, and still believe, in the adaptability of the american business. ladies and gentlemen, we had to administer tough medicine to rescue them, but together we saved jobs. your brothers and sisters jobs. the industry has added another 200,000 jobs. [applause] excuse me, i have a cold. gm is once again leading the world -- the world possibly automobile manufacturer. leadingorld's
11:32 pm
automobile manufacturer. right now, there are 600,000- tech manufacturing jobs going unfilled. during the decade of the 1980's and 1990's, when more outsourcing those jobs, machinists and jobs like that -- we lost the skill sets that were needed. a high-tech manufacturing jobs are coming back. companies are having a hard time putting workers to the task. workers desperately wanted chance to work. that is what we launched a partnership between what my wife jill calls the best-kept secret in america, community colleges, and those manufacturers. [applause] those manufacturers needing specialized help. all across america, we have a conveyor belt set up. we say to community college, and
11:33 pm
businesses, tell us what kinds of workers you need. we will have the community college start course is to certify them. it is a conveyor belt. guess what? mitt romney thinks that is a bad idea to have this jobs located in the community where people live. we are committed to breaking down unfair barriers that block access to so many american products in markets overseas. the president has set up -- everybody talks about getting tough on china. the president set up a special new agency inside the white house to make sure that american products are -- would have a fighting chance. it is called the trade enforcement union. we say, you screw around and do not let us in, we are taking action against you. play fair, play it safe.
11:34 pm
we want the rest of the world to understand what american consumers are ready now, that american workers of the most productive in the world and make the best products in the world. my dad, the thing that makes unhappiest, got up and he has passed away, but he is cheering not just because the industry is back, but in the first 23 years j.d. power says that american automobiles are the best-made. >[applause] i have been criticized in the last seven or eight years for saying that american manufacturing can be the role of the 20% tree. where is it written? where is it written that the united states cannot dominate the 21st century as the world's leading manufacturer? where is that written? [applause]
11:35 pm
right now i point out to you -- china makes 19.8% of manufacturing. in the middle of this recession, we still have 19.4%. and hang on, china, we are coming. [applause] luck -- we have got to do more. that is what we pushed it tax credit for companies that support renewable energy. mitt romney dismisses wind and -- ar, two of the most o ballyhooed forms of fuel. tell that to 7000 iowans manufacturing wind power in the state. living a decent life, raising a decent wage. that is likely one to end the practice of giving a tax break when he dismantled a company and shipped overseas. you get a tax break for moving it overseas. we want to reverse that.
11:36 pm
we will give you a tax break if you come home. that is when you get a tax break. [applause] these guys oppose that. these guys oppose that. as my brother would say, go figure. manufacturing is coming back. 495,000 new manufacturing jobs since 2010. nearly 20,000 right here in the state of iowa. the fastest growth in manufacturing since the 1990's. so to all the skeptics, to our republican opponents to especially, do not tell me america cannot make things any more. that it cannot compete on world market again. that it cannot lead the world again. it is just not true. you do not have to look any further than here in waterloo. look at this john deere. they have added 850 jobs, almost all of them good, a union manufacturing jobs. [applause]
11:37 pm
i might note parenthetically, unions built in a class in america. [applause] -- to the middle class in america. [applause] they're not only making equipment, you are exporting equipment. you are exporting it. romney said the president is out of touch when the president encouraged young people to try to get manufacturing jobs. he set out of touch. a president with a swiss bank account and investments in the cayman islands. all kidding aside, did you ever think we would choose between two people running for president, one of whom had a swiss bank accounts?
11:38 pm
out of touch? [laughter] i do not get it. but at any rate, look. ladies and gentlemen, i do not think there has been, in recent times, a nominee for president who has been as out of touch, as good of a decent guy he is, as out of touch with the needs of the american people. my dad used to have an expression. you alluded to it, rick. he said, a job, jerry, is about growing up. when someone lost a job, his brothers or sisters, my mom's brothers or sisters, he would say, a job isn't -- about a lot more than a paycheck. it is about your dignity.
11:39 pm
it is about your respect. it is better place in the community. your sense of yourself. it is so much more than just a paycheck. this is all about rebuilding the middle class. the president and i know that the future of this country depends on building this country and the middle out, not the top down. when the president said that the building a class is the defining issue of our time, that is not hyperbole. we literally mean that. folks, the middle-class does well, the poor have a shot and the wealthy do very well. folks, do not listen to the economists who try to define the middle-class for you. it is not $52,000, it is a way of life. it is a value said. in rural america, you know that. it is a place for neighbors look out for each other.
11:40 pm
well, when times are tough, communities come together. people turn to one another. not against one another. it is about being able to own your own home. not rent your home. it is about being able to be safe, being able to send your kid in a -- to a good school if they work hard. the promise that you can send them to college. and, most importantly, when the graduate that they can come home and put down their own roots. [applause] i got criticized pretty rapidly for saying in ohio, in the ohio valley, that one thing i resent about these guys is the talk about middle-class guys -- i do not live in middle-class life anymore. they fly me around. you know, but that is where i
11:41 pm
come from. i lived my whole life. ladies and gentlemen, i get very angry. you talk to these guys, they talk about us middle-class folks like we do not have dreams and aspirations. i grew up in a household with a three-bedroom house and four bedroom -- four siblings, including myself. always one relative was living with us permanently. when grandma died, grandpa movement. -- moved in. guess what? during all that time, i did not hear anybody tell me anything other than that we had an obligation to take care of one another. i did not ever once wonder whether or not my mother and father believed i could be president of the united states, my brother could be a millionaire, my youngest son could write the great american novel. they had the same dreams of the
11:42 pm
people have. they had the same aspirations. they talk about wealth and the -- we do not have wealth and the. with this one our kids to start off with a platform. we want to do have a shot to do whatever they want. that is what is called in a class. it is about being able to dream that your child can be whatever they want to be. ladies and gentlemen, it is about being able to help your parents and hope you will not have to receive help from her children. my dad was right. these guys and i did it. is that dignity. it is about respect. it is about being able -- it is understandable they do not get it, but it is about being able to turn your child and say, honey, it is going to be ok, and to have confidence you can deliver on that. whatever that is, it is going to be ok. president obama understands that
11:43 pm
you do not grow an economy from the top down. you go from the middle-class out. the bill education. the bill innovation. -- you build education. you build innovation. you give everybody in this country a fair shot and hold everybody responsible. that is how we will rebuild the middle class. we will never be able to outsource our way to greatness. the greatness of this nation is the determination of all of you, the american people. it is because of you that our country is back. america is coming back. street by street, block by block, neighborhood by neighborhood. so keep it up. i'm proud of you. we have an incredible feature. we have a long way to go, but we cannot step back. we must move forward. god bless you all. thank you very much. [applause]
11:44 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:45 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:46 pm
♪ [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] ♪
11:47 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:48 pm
♪ ♪ [conversation] ♪
11:49 pm
♪ [conversation] ♪
11:50 pm
♪ [conversation] ♪
11:51 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation]
11:52 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation] ♪
11:53 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:54 pm
[conversation] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation]
11:55 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation]
11:56 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation] ♪
11:57 pm
♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation] ♪ ♪ ♪
11:58 pm
♪ [conversation] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:59 pm
[conversation] ♪ ♪ ♪ [conversation] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
12:00 am
>> next, a house hearing on how new technology is changing the way americans watch tv and video. the discussion at the brookings institution about the defense budget. and senator john mccain talks about the u.s. relationship with turkey and unrest in syria.
12:01 am
in "washington journal" will be joined by a member of the oversight and reform committee to about the congressional agenda and a look ahead at the supreme court decision. will talk about the upcoming supreme court decision with peter roche, a member of the oversight and government reform committee and chief deputy whip. every day at 7:00 a.m. eastern. >> harry truman goes to the white house and says to eleanor roosevelt, can i prefer you? and she says, no. we need to pray for you. >> their campaigns.
12:02 am
>> there are lot of promises made. it would have to rent a large hall, much larger than this one to get all the people jack kennedy promised the vice- president to that year. >> calvin coolidge may have been the last jeffersonian. he believed strongly enough in the limits of power and a federal power to resist the temptation to extend it. >> this sunday, your questions and comments for david petruza. and a middle east expert on the response to the arab spring, afghanistan, iraq, and the palestinian peace process. sunday night at 9:00 p.m. on cspan2. >> witnesses testified on how new technology is changing how americans watched television and video. examined whether existing
12:03 am
regulations can accommodate services like internet video streaming and video on demand. the subcommittee hearing is 2 1/2 hours. >> call to order the subcommittee on communications and technology. we certainly welcome our panelists, witnesses who are here today, we appreciate your willingness to come in and share your thoughts on the future of video. this is one of a series of hearings that we have organized. the first being the future of audio and the future of video and we will do the future of data. in july will have all five fcc commissioners here now that it is up to full functioning status. we're looking at these various rules and laws that have been on the books for a long time and in an era where the marketplace
12:04 am
continues to evolve and change dynamically and in a rapid way. the fcc regulates the a providers based on a bygone era. when congress passed the 1992 cable act, cable operators controlled 90% of the market and were affiliated with 53% of the national program networks. that law was meant to spur competition. it worked. nationwide, satellite tv providers, dish and direct tv control one-third of the market and are the second and third largest providers. only 50% of networks are vertically integrated with the cable operator. broadcast asians are going mobile and wireless carriers and streaming video. programmers and pay tv providers are filling screens with their content and services as the fastest viewers are clamoring for them. new entities are flocking to the market. within the last 10 years,
12:05 am
youtube, itunes, netflix, amazon, hulu and others have left to provide programming over the internet. one option is to recognize the competitive landscape and start deregulating cable, satellite, and broadcast companies. the other it is to expand the communications act to apply to the new technologies and services. i do not believe we should be expanding beer regulation. internet distributed video is growing at a remarkable pace in the absence of regulation. video represents more than half of global internet traffic by 2011. video delivered over the internet to televised -- to television's doubled in 2011. it will increase sixfold by 2016, representing 11% of video traffic. by 2016, 1.2 million minutes of video will cross the network
12:06 am
every second. it would take more than 6 million years to watch the amount of video that will cross global ip's networks each month. and satellitee bike providers are experimenting with the internet distribution. regulation is not only unnecessary in such a vibrant environment, it can harm this nation's competition. the cast is healthy. a vibrant marketplace benefits consumers and generates new jobs. the last thing we want is to shackle everyone's entrepreneurial spirit with a one-size-fits-all rules designed for another day and time. if we're not going to apply the old regime to the new participants, we must recognize the inequity of applying it to the traditional players. the rules were premised on a lack of video competition that is not the reality any more. to impose the regulations in a desperate fashion is bitter
12:07 am
technologically more competitively neutral. is not only unfair to the parties, it does yours a disservice. we would this is how we will spur innovation. i yield the balance of my time to the vice chair. >> thank you. a lot has changed in the video marketplace over the last 20 years. contrast, distribution, and preferences that have all evolved. we are a society that wants what we want when we wanted and wherever we want it. communications sector has spent billions over the last two decades in order to meet that consumer appetite. as we engage in discussions about the current state of video marketplace and get bogged down in the granular details of disputes, it is apparent that we always keep one thing in mind.
12:08 am
the consumer is and always will remain the most important component of the discussion. it is appropriate to ask questions about whether the regulations of decades past are, in fact, still appropriate today. did the inhibit competition or spur it? do they create regulatory parity or uneven playing fields? most important, do we still work to the betterment of the consumer? war, are consumers caught in the middle? consumers need to benefit from the great expansion in technologies and mobility of technology trade with that i would like to submit for the record a letter written with regards to that technology. i think my friend -- i think my friend from oregon and yelled back. >> the chair recognizes ms.
12:09 am
[unintelligible] >> thank you for having this hearing. it is a very important one and when you look at the line outside, there is a great deal of interest. over the past 20 years, the video market has undergone or workable transformation. consumers have access to more programming choices than ever before and have increasing control over where and when they watch these programs thanks to the deevey are -- dvr and smart phones and tablets. there are key barriers that have concerns -- that could curtail the exciting innovation that defines the next generation of video. when congress passed the 1996 act, we require the sec to establish -- fcc to establish
12:10 am
rules to establish trace in competition. what we -- women never have imagined the benefits -- we may never have imagined the benefits. second, consumers should not be held hostage when transmission disputes breakdown. since 2010, 10 different multichannel video programming distributors have experienced at least 34 blackouts and at least 76 media markets. among the most high-profile disputes which i think all of us recall was a blackout that presented millions of households for -- prevented millions of households from watching the 2010 world series. ask for consent to submit for
12:11 am
the record a broadcaster rate trends -- blackout. i am concerned about the potential impact of that caps on the growth of the streaming video market. two weeks ago, it was widely reported that the department of justice have begun looking into whether data caps limit video competition. we do not know the extent of this inquiry, it fal on the subcommittee to examine the issue and insure future innovation is not curtailed. there are joint agreements involving verizon and several of the largest cable companies that are an example of changing video landscape. last week i once again called on -- for the subcommittee to have a hearing to review the proposed transaction and i hope that the chairman will agree to
12:12 am
this request. i have not taken a position on these proposed changes or what is in the works but i do think that we would all benefit from an examination of them. i want to welcome again all of our witnesses that are here this morning. most especially to the two that have troubled probably the furthest. thank you again and i yield back the balance of my time.
12:13 am
videohe fcc's data on competition is six years of data, let alone the regulations. the laws of economics encourage diversity. companies that can provide the same services or content at cheaper prices drive to offer different services of content. that is what we call innovation. many regulations drive everything to the lowest common denominator. if everyone is entitled to whatever content is popular, why would anyone risk investing in something brand new? if everyone is entitled to the fruits of your labor, whether that is your distribution platform order content, you're
12:14 am
less likely to invest as much. differentiation is often a leading driver of competition. many attributed the exclusive availability of the football sunday ticket on direct tv as a prime source of that satellite tv provider's growth. this in turn forces other players to invest in different content, develop better services, or lower prices. regulations will only decrease economic activity. if behavior were economic, there would be no need to compel it. while such might be warranted in a world where cable operators serve close to 100% of the pay- tv market, that is not the world we live in any more. cable -- the cable share has dropped from 98% at the time that congress passed the 1992 cable act with 60% in 2006.
12:15 am
that is about 55% today. that means almost one out of every other home gets their programming from some other source. like a satellite operator or phone company. the number of national program networks grew from 106 in 1994 to 565 in 2006. the percentage of networks' affiliated with the cable operator has shrunk from 50 -- 53%. we want to spur investment in jobs. the time may be to pull back on laws that congress and the laws of economics do more of the work. fears across the country would be better for it. >> we have three on our side would like time. >> a little nudge from this committee would [inaudible]
12:16 am
the 1992 cable when it was passed, everything has changed dramatically since then. i hope today is the first step toward all this coming together with a process to modernize the 1992 cable act. the cisco released a study revealing over 60% of the u.s. data traffic will be video. the current push to enter the market are examples of consumer demand. consumers have access to more content, higher quality programming to and a greater variety of devices than perhaps ever before. i look forward to learning what is working and what the government can do to enhance the future video further. >> now, the gentle lady from tennessee. >> thank you for -- to our
12:17 am
witnesses today. from the opening statements, we can agree that the construct and the video arena has changed. changed in innovation and i was speaking through my 20 years of working in the private and public sector on this issue and going from big bucks to me to home theaters and watching the analog to digital. you can carry pretty much whatever you want on the ipad and plugged it in into a scream and -- a screen. consumers said the best that deciding what they want in content and also in their delivery mechanisms. i look forward to the discussion we're going to have about how we insert free market principles into the good work and innovation you do. i yield back. >> recognizing their ranking member. >> thank you for holding this
12:18 am
hearing to examine the future of video. i want to thank you for working with us to assemble an interesting and diverse panel by witnesses. internet access is altering how video content is produced, delivered to my & -- and consumed. our challenge is to ensure diversity of voices. robust competition, and greater access to these new platforms. the panel of witnesses before us illustrates the many ways americans can access video programming today free over the air broadcasting. pay television service, like, even traditional telephone companies, or video delivered to your broadband connection. video programming is no longer the exclusive -- and province of the television set.
12:19 am
consumers can use tablets and smart phones to watch their preferred content. innovative products and services are increasingly putting viewers in control of what, when, where, and how to watch video. even as we marvel at the incredible advances in technology, we must be mindful that policy choices we make today will impact the video landscape we see tomorrow. we should examine whether the legal framework created 20 years ago still works for a video market filled with choices that did not even exist two or three years ago. we should remember that old challenges can persist in the face of new opportunities. competitors need a fair shot at getting access to content and independent creators' need rules that prevent discrimination against carriage of their programming. the actions of this committee and others in congress helped it
12:20 am
once nascent industry like cable and satellite to offer new choices to consumers. we must continue to ensure innovation in the video marketplace can continue to flourish. as consumers watch video through broadband and open internet that is accessible to all, it becomes even more important. we need to carefully examine whether practices like broadband data usage caps are restricting consumer choice or being employed in an anti-competitive manner. also deserving of our scrutiny is whether major providers of video and broadband services will continue to have the incentives to compete in light of joint agreements and consolidation in the marketplace. i join our ranking member in requesting hearings to examine the proposed transactions between verizon and four of the nation's largest cable companies including an examination of the
12:21 am
joint marketing agreements that would allow the companies to cross market each other's services. i hope the committee will convene a hearing so members can consider the impact of these deals, not only on the video and broadband markets, but also on wireless competition. i appreciate the witnesses participating in today's hearing and i look forward to your testimony. i want to yield the time. >> i want to add my greetings to my constituent from dish network who came almost as far to be with us today. thank you for coming. i yield back. >> i join you in welcoming our panelists whether they came from california or from pastry. welcome to you all. yield back. >> thank you for being here. we will start with mr. robert
12:22 am
johnson, the ceo of sky angel, us, llc. we appreciate your testimony and look forward to your comments. if you have not use these microphones you need to get pretty close to them to make sure the light is on. >> it is my pleasure to have this testimony today. thank you for inviting me to read his bait -- participate. sky angel was founded for the purpose of providing families with a high-quality and affordable distribution that would offer exclusively for family friendly program. there are 80 channels that are offered. many of which are familiar in american households such as the
12:23 am
hallmark channel, fox news, the nfl channel, bloomberg, and the weather channel, to name a few. also, we will be adding a new african american family channel started by magic johnson. skype angell is the first to provide a service which uses internet protocol television technology. and a set top box. subscribers can not access the included programming without the box which has broadband internet input, including home wireless rudder access and video output that connect to their television sets. sky angel is not a web based service and no external computer is needed. all any american family needs is a television set and a broadband internet service of modest capability.
12:24 am
our set top box looks and acts like the ones consumers use at home. here is one of them. the sky angel subscriber uses a remote-controlled. the click on the selection that they want to watch. the service is functionally identical to typical cable or satellite video distribution. it offers systems at affordable rates. the cost 3299 a month. it includes unlimited access to a library of movies which are also family friendly. we have recently rebranded as save tv. we have inspirational
12:25 am
programming also available to the ipad. our goal is to offer safe haven to enjoy the largest selection as possible of video and audio programming and recorded video programming without fear of exposure to objectionable content. we're proud -- cipro recipient of the seal of approval from the parents television council. families can have media as a wholesome source of entertainment. the choice is theirs. our business model is not complicated. we enter into written agreements with programmers through the system. we pay the programmers monthly fees for a subscriber receives the channel. sky angel enters into relationships with consumers. we downlink our channels at our state-of-the-art center provide
12:26 am
-- located outside chanted a. -- chattanooga. we have been facing obstacles. one shocking example is c-span which is supposed to be a public service but c-span refuses to deal with us. three years ago, c-span entered into an agreement with us for distribution of c-span channels on the system. however, sees band cut its service of three days after we started carrying it. we had a signed contract. c-span said they had made a mistake in not permitting us to carry its channels. c-span has been offered on the internet as a free public service to all but as your people know, c-span is controlled by the cable television industry.
12:27 am
in addition to the shocking decision of c-span to cut us off, a number of large programmers have refused to deal with sky angel saying that they want to avoid conflict with big players in the video distribution industry. unlike c-span which is supposed to be a public service, prefers that refuse to deal with us are passing up the higher subscriber rate that we typically pay because we are too small to have any bargaining power. discovery communications is the most obvious example of a large program that refused a lucrative agreement in order to stifle competition. my written statement sent -- describe the problems with the discovery in some detail. they cut us off from receiving their channels two years into a seven-year distribution agreement. discovery has never offered a coherent explanation for its actions which did not make economic sense. we are positive that it was
12:28 am
anti-competitive by nature, trying to deter a new startup company using iptv technology. we filed a program access complaint against discovery in march of 2010. today, the fcc has never made a substantive ruling on that case. even though the fcc policy only own decisions -- on decisions -- own decisions say to file a complete within five months. 27 months have passed without substantive action by the fcc. sky angel remains injured. we believe our experience with starting an operating a new distribution service shows that there is anti-competitive conduct in the industry and
12:29 am
significant problems with the manner in which the fcc is failing to enforce program access laws and regulations so that of valuable new competitors are facing unfair discrimination create a program access requirements for choir fair treatment of competitors but those requirements are not being enforced. the will of congress is being ignored and competition by sky angel and others is being stifled. we believe the public interest in supporting competition in video distribution, expanded use of the internet, and diversity in programming sources and affordable choices for american families of requires the attention of the congress to ensure that the existing legal framework is fairly tame -- and properly enforced. thank you for the opportunity to testify and i will be pleased to answer any questions that you may have or provide you with any additional information. >> thank you for your testimony. we look forward to following up
12:30 am
with some questions. we now turn to the president and ceo of public knowledge. delighted to havewe look forwars as well >> >> thank you for inviting me to talk about the future of video. there is widespread agreement that we are currently living in the golden age of television but despite the great programming and ground-breaking devices, americus are still locked into a tv business model that limited speed limits competition and choice and limit technology and online video from achieving their full potential. this is his model was made possible largely by an outstanding regulatory structure created by incumbents to gain competitive advantage. it is time for policymakers to revamp the structure so new video competition drives. giving consumers greater options and the ability to watch a video whenever they want and on the device of their choosing. this will result the dental lower prices, and more flexibility of control for
12:31 am
consumers the internet is contained in the video marketplace just as a change the market for music, books and other forms of media. consumers are attempting to drive this change by demanding that more content be provided to them through the internet. one aggressive campaign advocates for hbo content which is only available if you subscribe to cable or satellite tv service to be available for purchase on the internet. more than 60,000 people visited the petition website within 12 hours of this launch, leaving many of them to express their willingness to pay money directly to hbo only if it were available on the internet. despite this level of excitement for internet video distribution, it is not a foregone conclusion that the internet will disrupt the video marketplace. dominant players today control both the content their online competitors need for service and the pipes they must use to reach consumers.
12:32 am
as a result, much high-value program and -- programming is not available to online video providers. they have to contend with the data caps and other discriminatory -- discriminatory practices. while it is inevitable that ip will play a large part of video delivery, it is not inevitable that the market will leach -- reach its full potential. policy should be extended to ensure that new competitors like sky and so can accept high-value content at reasonable prices. if they do this while protecting internet openness, they can ensure the video marketplace normalizes and becomes competitive. there are other regulations that permeate the video marketplace that should be repealed today. the network on duplications and sports blackout rules would do little more than preserve old business models. if these protectionist rules ever made sense, they certainly
12:33 am
do not today. we are on the right track with the bill that will clear away much of the regulatory underbrush that holds back the evolution of the video marketplace. the bill does go too far by eliminating media ownership restrictions. of the rules like transmission consent are also outdated. they're part of the interval in fabric of regulatory and business expectations. they should be reformed cautiously and eventually in real -- eliminated. copyright laws also regulation that is often misused to hold back innovation. by taking these simple steps, policy makers will be able to facilitate the development of competitive on-line video and subsequently to disengage from regulations that were designed to counter the effects of bottleneck control. if they fail to do this, it is
12:34 am
likely that incumbents will continue to shape the development of the video market and extend their current dominance indefinitely. while the internet provides grounds for hope that the future of video will be much better for consumers, a lot of work remains for this hope to become reality. thank you. i look forward to your questions. >> thank you for being here. we appreciate your testimony. now we will welcome david hyman, the general counsel for netflix. we look forward to your testimony. just touched that button to make sure it is on. ok. there we go. >> good morning. netflix helped pioneer streaming movies and television shows over the internet. we began to deliver instant streaming videos through the use of a handful of in a neck-and- neck the device in 2008.
12:35 am
millions of consumers use the service on more than 900 different types of devices. including game consoles, mobile phones and tablets. netflix delivers close to 1 billion hours to its members every month. the internet delivery of video provides consumers with unprecedented freedom and control over what video programming they can watch as well as when and where they can watch it. this is the future of video. increased demand for internet video is thriving consumer adoption of broadband. it is spring waves of innovation in consumer electronics with virtually all new device is being interconnected. leaders like netflix are developing methods for delivering the data traversing the internet. a few weeks ago, we announced the roll out of our open connect network, a single purpose content delivery network focused on the approach to distributions of large media files. our goal is to help make it faster and less expensive
12:36 am
internet for all. we are connecting to isp's free of charge and making open software components publicly available. user interfaces to which consumers discover engage with video are likewise [unintelligible] it will likely be replaced with intuitive and visually stimulating ui's that use motion, touch and voice as a means of control. over the next few years, they will evolve in amazing ways. at that rate for now, choosing a little -- a decade from now, it will feel odd. last year, we announce several original television series. this is the first time high- quality productions will be debuted through the internet. our first show will be "house of
12:37 am
cards," a political series taking place right here in washington d.c.. it will start kevin spacey. netflix is giving artists greater latitude to create compelling stories of giving our members the freedom to watch world-class contents in a way that suits their preferences. video services like netflix are leveraging the power of the internet to help consumers discover content they will love. using recommendation and merchandising technology, netflix is helping to expand the reach and popularity of video content. the availability on netflix of all for prior seasons of this series"mad men" help to drive a 20% increase in those watching this season's opening episode. by combining technology with onsumer choice, we hi eightt
12:38 am
-- hit an untapped audience. all this change has led to speculation about the demise of platforms in the works but it is our belief that these platforms a net worth also adapt to today's shipping video landscape. we see the beginnings of this the various authenticated internet video offerings, that provide cable subscribers on demand access to a variety of content through internet connected devices like the ipod and the x box. cable subscribers are afforded many of the benefits of internet video with in the bundle offering of their cable service. i would recommend you take a look at comcast s st's stream picks. these implementations will likely grow at the popularity.
12:39 am
ben netflix as we focus on streaming and begin to offer original content, we're often asked if we're not becoming more like a traditional network such as hbo. but these networks are becoming more like netflix. a traditional platform of networks and move to distribute their programming over the internet. they are beginning to compete more directly but over the top internet video providers like netflix. as this trend continues, issues like discriminatory data capps and ip internet connection must be discerning -- looked at with a discerning eye. yet both the means and motivation to engage in anticompetitive behavior. at this regulatory framework largely crafted before the modern internet era and you have the makings for confusion. competition leads to innovation and growing consumer choice.
12:40 am
in large part because of innovation from internet players like netflix, traditional platforms are changing their ways of doing business. in adapting to the changing landscape, these platforms a net worth should not be prediction not unfairly leverage their relationships to stifle unaffiliated video providers. i encourage this committee to examine the evolving competitive in their net movement -- internet environment. thank you for the opportunity. i look forward to your questions. >> thank you for your testimony in participation. we will not go to jim funk mr., senior vice president for roku. we look forward to your testimony. >> good morning. thank you for inviting me here to testify today about the future of video.
12:41 am
i am a senior vice president, product management and roku. roku was founded 10 years ago in silicon valley. we have less than 200 employees, still small by comparison with other companies represented here. the company's founder is this a real entrepreneur who among many accomplishments started replay tv and is considered the inventor of the dvr, now among the most popular entertainment devices. four years ago, roku introduced a set top box that allow customers to stream of movies from netflix over the internet and watch them in high quality on their tv without needing a computer. the combination of a $99 player and netflix streaming was a revolutionary offering. four years later, there are hundreds of models of tvs, blu- ray players, came souls -- game consoles offering this
12:42 am
capability. these products can be found today at target and amazon.com and walmart. since the launch of the player, we have sold more than 3 million boxes in the u.s. and now offer a range of very affordable products. roku has grown beyond a set top box and has become an open skimming platform that allows content providers to create applications or channels. roku features more than 500 channels available to millions of households that purchase our players. most roku users have a cable or satellite service in addition to roku player and roku provide new entertainment tresses and ways to get more value add of a cable or satellite television service. roku users can enjoy it tens of thousands of tv shows and movies on demand was services like hbo
12:43 am
and epics. the offer sports packages -- we offer sports packages. and news. roku can enjoy streaming music services like pandora, fought the sharing and popular games. roku is becoming an alternative way to reach consumers for existing video distributors. we announced a partnership with dish network to stream international programming to consumers who may not be able to install a satellite dish. they can now enjoy on demand movies and shows from hbo and at 6 on roku. local broadcasters have begun to experiment with breaching their audience. today you can watch local news on demand from our test patients located in madison, wisconsin, las vegas and indianapolis.
12:44 am
roku is a means for content producers who do not have traditional cable or satellite distribution to reach the living room tv via the internet. we have over 75 channels representing everything from individual convocations -- congregations to. we believe that devices like roku are part of the future of television because of what we already see. the average user streams over 10 hours of video per week which is almost one-third of the number of hours the average american watches traditional tv. consumers like the new technology because it combines all the new content choices with convenience and value. with the widespread adoption of dior's -- dvrs, the internet provides virtually unlimited capacity.
12:45 am
the combination of an expensive internet connected devices and the expanding selection of internet video services offer an excellent entertainment value for consumers. i did not come here today to advocate for specific legislation. our point of view is that devises roku such as represented an area of excitement, finding a home in the living room of millions of consumers. these devices are being embraced by all segments of the entertainment industry to expand at -- to expand opportunities. they are also driving the adoption of high-speed broadband connections. our interest here is that there continue to be an open marketplace for competition in this space. that includes not only competition between device manufacturers but also open competition between video services, both traditional and new, as well as competition
12:46 am
between internet service providers. the widespread availability of high-speed internet open to all video sources is essential to continued growth and innovation in this market. thank you for your time. >> thank you for your testimony. most helpful. we now go to mr. michael powell, president of the national cable and telecommunications association. glad to have the year to date. >> thank you, mr. chairman and ranking member. always a great honor to appear here before the committee. i have done it many times. i am also proud to be here as a representative of america's great success story, the cable operators and cable programmers of the united states, to talk about the future of video. for one reason only -- this is an industry through its own investment and technological innovation that has contributed to the present we currently enjoy it and has every intention of contributing to a more glorious future in the area of
12:47 am
video. it is important to remember that cable when first pioneered was all about making tv better. we brought television to rural american urban areas that could not be reached by traditional broadcast programming. we ultimately developed the original programming that led to the iconic brands that most americans associate with the television today. cnn, espn, cspan, discovery, the history channel. the lives or all creations of the cable industry working in cooperation with the production community. we were the first to bring about any kind -- in a time shifting through video and demand. in 1996 when congress called on the communications space to introduce telephone competition, it was the cable industry that must inevitably made an impact representing almost 25% of all telephone service today. then there is broad band.
12:48 am
tralee the cable industry stepped up and led to the mass deployment, now averaging 93% of all homes in america. we are experiencing a truly golden age of television. but almost any metric used, we are experiencing the best we ever had. there is simply more content. we have gone from a 1950's world of three channels to one in which there are 100 channels back in 1992 to over 900 programming channel sources today. that continues to expand at a rapid rate. is it any good? i would submit that tv is producing the finest content it has in its entire history. the critically acclaimed programs like "modern family" are truly captioning the imagination of the american
12:49 am
public. i think the industry and content producers have a great deal to be proud of in terms of the quality. when i was at the sec, are a central role -- our central goal was the diversity of content. we do not want all of the same step. we are experiencing a time in which we hit on the model that allows true diversity of niche programming to smaller audiences by definition but ones that are passionate about the things they believe in. if you fish, love music, great sports, court on politics, or refund your committee on television or if you have a fetish for "the jersey shore," it is all out there. you should be proud of what we have achieved in diversity. i would fully met the 20 years ago when the cable act was passed, the cable industry was a monopoly and had 98% a multichannel video distribution
12:50 am
in this country. today, it enjoys 57%. its share has remained flat or declined in the face of competitive threat. today americans can choose between cable companies, the satellite companies that rank second and third in subscribership, telcos, you can buys dvds at best buy. or go to a red box and distribution machine. it is an exciting opportunity. but we have not seen enough. d internet finally began to produce a realization of its promise. you're looking at extraordinary amounts of internet content and video by a host of companies. there has been 80% increase in video streaming since 2008. by some estimates, 62% of traffic primetime on the internet is video content.
12:51 am
the original content is being produced on every conceivable the vice. that is an exciting place. this golden age is set against the regulatory environment that is tarnished. i am a big believer that law is premised on certain factual predicate about markets, economics and technology. today's regulatory regime is built on a foundation that crumbled long ago. i submit my full testimony for then and now analysis but you can quickly see, cable owns 57% of the market today. cable once owned 54% of the cable channels you see today. today the only own 14%. in 1992, the majority of americans watch television over the air. today that is down to 14%. the predicate on which the law build crumbled into the sand and it is time they be re-evaluated.
12:52 am
i'd like to conclude by taking on the conjecture and speculation and at the suggestion that somehow the cable industry is actively involved in an effort to destroy or eliminate over the top emerging competition. it is flatly wrong and belied by the facts. we have seen a breathtaking explosion and video streaming content. netflix is the largest provider of subscription a video in the country. that cable or satellite. that growth has occurred in the current marketplace. our policy have in no way for the consumer's ability to watch content by any measure. we are expanding to meet demand consistently, have increased by 10 speed than hunter% in the last decade. recently announced plans for a startling speed by the end of the decade.
12:53 am
we sell broadbent. as the testimony of the ceo of roku netflix and made clear, their services help stimulate demand for the services we sell. members of our board are proud and appreciative of some of those services. thank you and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you. we look forward to asking a few questions of you and the other panelists. now to the president and ceo of hearst television, mr. david barrett. >> good morning chairman and ranking members. i am the president and ceo of hearst television. our company owns 29 tv stations across the country, a number of which are in your home market. i traveled here today from new york city on behalf of the national association of broadcasters. you can tell from the makeup of this panel that the future of video is very bright and diverse and more inclusive than ever before.
12:54 am
each of us here today plays an important role in the video ecosystem but what differentiates television broadcasters from every other entity at this table is our unique commitment to serve our local communities and operate in public interest. localism is our mandate in the breed it every day. the supplement our local programming with the most popular national entertainment, news, sports programs to provide viewers in variety and quality of content unmatched by any other medium. we cannot discuss the future of video without talking about spectrum. the oxygen of our delivery for over the air signals. with concerns over spectrum use intensifying, broadcast television uniquely offers the most efficient use of spectrum to transfer video. the genius of television broadcasting is its architecture. for high demand programming like the upcoming olympics, there is no limit to how many viewers can tune into these games and
12:55 am
events. with wireless architecture, there is not enough spectrum on the planet to allow every viewer to watch the events simultaneously on smartphone are tablet devices. there should be no doubt that we need to focus on the most efficient ways to deliver video to our consumers. today and into the future in order to optimize the video experience. to meet the demands for mobility, our industry is today launching podcast mobile television. new mobile devices and the doctors will enable reception of full motion digital broadcast without the need for additional spectrum. because podcast mobile tv relies on our existing over the air transmission, we can offer a high-quality video without running up expensive consumer costs or exhausting day the capps, internet providers provoke -- internet providers impose on their customers. these innovations will highlight
12:56 am
how creatively broadcasters are using their digital spectrum now and will be doing so in the future. as broadcast is initiated compared to the fcc policy determinations, not jeopardize the opportunity to bring these new services to life. our industry recognizes that consumers expect programming on a variety of devices large and small. in order to make that a reality and preserve our business -- it's as fidelity, content producers will need insurance the programming will only be transmitted with prior consent and agreed upon compensation. in the current television context, re jens missing consent allows companies to negotiate in the free-market for the value of the broadcast signal. these negotiations are successful because both sides of the deal have scan in the game. we have a mutuality of interest. broadcasters benefit from the
12:57 am
exposure that cable and satellite provides. likewise these video operators benefit from reselling are incredibly popular content. it has been suggested by some in the cable industry that cable bills are rising because of the cost of broadcast programming. there is a chart on the screen that would indicate the data does not support that assertion. cable price increases have consistently outpaced inflation for 11 of the last 12 years. it is the cable networks that have been collecting the vast majority of carriage fees. the next chart shows the differential and disparity in fees paid to basic cable networks compared to the total fees to broadcasters. both on a chellie basis and as projected into the future. in 201 it is estimated cable will pay broadcasters to billion dollars to read trans fees -- in retrans fees.
12:58 am
this did not give effect to the value of the inventory change that goes on from cable networks to the cable mso's of that amount of money does not equal what the $27 million disparity. this is even more confounding when you consider broadcast ratings are many times higher than cable in so many cases. approximately 95 of the top 100 shows in the recent television season aired on broadcast television in the demographic of 18-29 and 29-54. retrans payments are not the drivers of increasing cable bills. how do we ensure our broadcast can dent -- content is successful beyond its traditional platforms to the new video technologies? i will observe -- i think
12:59 am
congress got it right in 1992 when it noted broadcasters must be allowed controlled use of their signals by anyone engaged in reed transmission by any means. new companies like sky angell are part of the video marketplace but it appears to be unclear as to how the wall -- the law will apply to them and other new entrants. they're considering the question of what is a multi channel video program distributor. these questions have far reaching implications. who has a program access? who plays -- pays retransmission fees? the rules should be applied to all new entrants. as an industry that creates content or requires the right to content, it is imperative we have the right to negotiate over how are content is distributed. congress should reject any erosion of the bedrock principles to reach as missing

110 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on